Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Many online cancer tests inadequate

31.10.2006
Many self-tests for cancer available on the Internet do not fulfil the EU’s quality criteria, according to a new doctoral thesis from Karolinska Institutet.

“It is important to enlighten people searching for health information on the net that some sites don’t come up to scratch,” says MD Alexandra Ekman.

More and more people are starting to use the Internet to obtain health information. On certain websites, visitors can test themselves to find out what risk they run of developing a certain type of cancer. Alexandra Ekman examined a selection of such sites in 2001, 2002 and 2005, and her results show that none of them met all the quality criteria issued by the EU.

“Most sites are American, but all are available worldwide,” says Dr Ekman. “The information we found didn’t score particularly high on the quality scales we used. What’s more, there is no international consensus for quality criteria for the control and evaluation of information available online.”

However, Dr Ekman stresses that there are also sites that are fully adequate for assessing the risk of diseases. Her thesis started as an inventory in connection with a self-test for cancer that Karolinska Institutet launched a few years ago. The Swedish self-test was based on a site produced by the Harvard Centre for Cancer Prevention, which according to Dr Ekman maintains a high level of quality.

Her thesis also looks at the potential of the Internet in the new research field of

e-epidemiology. Information about diseases has traditionally been gathered through paper-based surveys, but there is much to suggest that web-based questionnaires give equally good results.

“Sweden is excellently suited for this kind of research because of our different population–based registries and our widespread use of internet, which reaches almost 100 per cent in some age-groups,” she says.

Epidemiology is the study of how diseases are spread throughout populations, and how risk and health factors interact with them. Researchers conducting such a study often monitor a large group of people over time to find out, for example, how their lifestyle affects their chances of developing a certain disease.

Doctoral thesis: "The Use of World Wide Web in Epidemiology Research" by Alexandra Ekman from the Department of Medical Epidemiology and Biostatistics, Karolinska Institutet, Sweden. Downloadable from http://diss.kib.ki.se/2006/91-7140-948-3/

For further information, please contact:

MD Alexandra Ekman
Phone: +46 (0)8-524 878 15
Email: alexandra.ekman@ki.se
KI Press Office
Phone: +46 70 299 6389
Email: ulla.bredberg@ki.se

Ulla Bredberg | alfa
Further information:
http://diss.kib.ki.se/2006/91-7140-948-3/

More articles from Health and Medicine:

nachricht The genes are not to blame
20.07.2018 | Technische Universität München

nachricht Targeting headaches and tumors with nano-submarines
20.07.2018 | Universitätsmedizin der Johannes Gutenberg-Universität Mainz

All articles from Health and Medicine >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Future electronic components to be printed like newspapers

A new manufacturing technique uses a process similar to newspaper printing to form smoother and more flexible metals for making ultrafast electronic devices.

The low-cost process, developed by Purdue University researchers, combines tools already used in industry for manufacturing metals on a large scale, but uses...

Im Focus: First evidence on the source of extragalactic particles

For the first time ever, scientists have determined the cosmic origin of highest-energy neutrinos. A research group led by IceCube scientist Elisa Resconi, spokesperson of the Collaborative Research Center SFB1258 at the Technical University of Munich (TUM), provides an important piece of evidence that the particles detected by the IceCube neutrino telescope at the South Pole originate from a galaxy four billion light-years away from Earth.

To rule out other origins with certainty, the team led by neutrino physicist Elisa Resconi from the Technical University of Munich and multi-wavelength...

Im Focus: Magnetic vortices: Two independent magnetic skyrmion phases discovered in a single material

For the first time a team of researchers have discovered two different phases of magnetic skyrmions in a single material. Physicists of the Technical Universities of Munich and Dresden and the University of Cologne can now better study and understand the properties of these magnetic structures, which are important for both basic research and applications.

Whirlpools are an everyday experience in a bath tub: When the water is drained a circular vortex is formed. Typically, such whirls are rather stable. Similar...

Im Focus: Breaking the bond: To take part or not?

Physicists working with Roland Wester at the University of Innsbruck have investigated if and how chemical reactions can be influenced by targeted vibrational excitation of the reactants. They were able to demonstrate that excitation with a laser beam does not affect the efficiency of a chemical exchange reaction and that the excited molecular group acts only as a spectator in the reaction.

A frequently used reaction in organic chemistry is nucleophilic substitution. It plays, for example, an important role in in the synthesis of new chemical...

Im Focus: New 2D Spectroscopy Methods

Optical spectroscopy allows investigating the energy structure and dynamic properties of complex quantum systems. Researchers from the University of Würzburg present two new approaches of coherent two-dimensional spectroscopy.

"Put an excitation into the system and observe how it evolves." According to physicist Professor Tobias Brixner, this is the credo of optical spectroscopy....

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

Leading experts in Diabetes, Metabolism and Biomedical Engineering discuss Precision Medicine

13.07.2018 | Event News

Conference on Laser Polishing – LaP: Fine Tuning for Surfaces

12.07.2018 | Event News

11th European Wood-based Panel Symposium 2018: Meeting point for the wood-based materials industry

03.07.2018 | Event News

 
Latest News

A smart safe rechargeable zinc ion battery based on sol-gel transition electrolytes

20.07.2018 | Power and Electrical Engineering

Reversing cause and effect is no trouble for quantum computers

20.07.2018 | Information Technology

Princeton-UPenn research team finds physics treasure hidden in a wallpaper pattern

20.07.2018 | Materials Sciences

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>