Over three-quarters of Americans look into their symptoms online before visiting a doctor

Hoang NguyenData Journalist
April 09, 2018, 6:30 PM GMT+0

Seven in ten say they like WebMD

When Americans fall sick, the first authority they turn to for help most likely will not be a real doctor. WebMD, a top 50 most-visited internet site, is the most popular online source of health information in the US. It may be the website that many point to when asked whether they investigate their symptoms online before going to see a doctor. YouGov’s latest poll reveals that more than three-quarters of Americans (77%) say they’ll “always” or “sometimes” look into their symptoms before seeking a medical professional’s help.

Just 16% say they don’t investigate into what’s ailing them before visiting a doctor. While a majority in each age group are likely to say they’ll go online to investigate first, those between the age of 25 and 34 (80%) and between 45 and 54 (81%) are the most likely to say so.

Of those who say they “always” do some preliminary research into their symptoms before heading to the doctor, over a third of millennials admit to this (35%). The likelihood of “always” doing so decreases with age and less than a fifth of Americans over the age of 55 (18%) say they will look into their symptoms online every time.

YouGov Profiles reveals that WebMD is a favorite among Americans. Over seven in ten (71%) say they “like” the website and within the last thirty days, 16% of Americans visited the website on their computers and 11% frequented it on their phones or tablets.

Read more results from this poll here

Learn more about YouGov Omnibus and YouGov Profiles

Photo: Getty

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