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Year : 2018  |  Volume : 15  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 182-185

Arabic websites relevant to patient information about spinal cord injury: Characteristics and quality assessment using the DISCERN tool

Faculty of Medicine, Mansoura University, Dakahliya, Egypt

Correspondence Address:
Mohamed H Elshahidi
Faculty of Medicine, Mansoura University, El Gomhouria St, Mansoura, Dakahliya
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/MJBL.MJBL_42_18

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Background: Spinal cord injury (SCI) requires special healthcare and rehabilitation. Objective: The article describes and qualitatively assesses Arabic websites relevant to patient information about SCI. Materials and Methods: In March 2018, Google was searched using the Arabic translation of SCI. The first 100 results were assessed against inclusion and exclusion criteria. The following data were collected: Website name, URL, its category, SCI topic, and whether Health on the Net (HON) code was included in this study. In addition, the quality of them was assessed using the DISCERN tool. Results: A total of 13 websites were included in this study. Only two websites included HON code. Majority of them (>10) included information about the definition of SCI, its causes and its complications. Eight of them mentioned available treatment options. Most of them were blogs. Two of them were from hospital that is advertising for their SCI healthcare. According to the quality level assessment, 30.8% were of poor quality, 23.7% were of fair quality, 23.7% were of good quality, and 23.7% were of excellent quality. Conclusion: This study shows that the current available Arabic websites with SCI are insufficient. Moreover, their quality needs to be improved. In addition, there is no available governmental or institutional website with patient information about the topic. Governments, universities, and associations are encouraged to fill this gap to prevent probable patient risks that may arise from it. Some recommendations regarding quality improvement are provided.

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