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Erectile dysfunction and prostate diseases are the predominant Google search terms amongst men’s health topics

Abstract

Patients are becoming increasingly active consumers of health information on the internet with urologic concerns being no exception. Our objective was to explore online search trends for topics related to men’s health and identify information-seeking patterns related to news and media coverage of these topics. We used Google Trends (http://google.com/trends) to explore search trends for various search terms related to men’s health in the United States over a 5-year period. Search queries provided graphs depicting search volume as a function of time, geographical data, and related topics and queries. Isolated spikes in search volume were further explored to identify a related event. Erectile dysfunction was the most-searched topic over the last 5 years in the United States. Prostate cancer and benign prostatic hyperplasia were the second and third most-searched topics, respectively. Other popular topics involved symptoms or pathologies of the testicles and penis. Most topics had relatively stable search volumes, with the exceptions of premature ejaculation and Peyronie’s disease. Several observed spikes in search volume were attributable to singular events, mostly in the form of online article publications or social media posts. We believe it may be helpful for providers to stay informed of cultural events relating to medical conditions to anticipate patient concerns.

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Fig. 1: Most popular men’s health searches.
Fig. 2: Search trends for Peyronie’s disease.
Fig. 3: Associations in erectile dysfunction.
Fig. 4: Discrete spikes in search volumes for men’s health topics and relevant associations.

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Correspondence to Mark Arthur.

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KH and MA—no conflicts of interest. CW—Compensated Reviewer for Oakstone Publishing, Medscape.

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Hanna, K., Arthur, M. & Welliver, C. Erectile dysfunction and prostate diseases are the predominant Google search terms amongst men’s health topics. Int J Impot Res (2021). https://doi.org/10.1038/s41443-021-00448-1

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