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Upper Limb Spasticity: The Quality of Online Patient Resources.

Larkin T, Martinez V, Scully T, Martinez D, Hayes C, Verduzco-Gutierrez M. Upper Limb Spasticity: The Quality of Online Patient Resources. American journal of physical medicine & rehabilitation. 2024 Jan 1; 103(1):18-23.

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OBJECTIVE: The aim of the study is to assess the quality, readability, content, accessibility, and structure of online resources for patients with upper limb spasticity. DESIGN: This was a cross sectional study examined Internet searches across three search engines related to patient resources for upper limb spasticity. Search phrases for either hand or upper limb spasticity were used. The top 20 Websites from each search were evaluated using the four readability metrics and the DISCERN scale for quality assessment. YouTube videos with exact search phrases were evaluated using DISCERN. Descriptive statistical analyses were performed using SPSS software. RESULTS: Thirty-six Websites and 33 videos met the inclusion criteria for this study. The average Flesh-Kincaid Grade Level of the Websites was 11.7 ± 3.1, showing low Website readability. According to this index, only two Websites were written at the suggested sixth-grade level (5.4%). With a maximum score of 75, the mean DISCERN score for both Websites and videos scored in the "good" range (53.5 ± 8 and 50.5 ± 6.6), respectively. CONCLUSIONS: Current online resources for upper limb spasticity are good in quality but are written above the health literacy level of American citizens. Organizations should consider reviewing their present materials and developing high-quality patient education materials that are easier to understand.

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