Malaysians are reminded not to rely too much on health-related content found online or "Dr Google" for medical advice, says Health Ministry secretary-general Datuk Seri Dr Chen Chaw Min.
He said that the trend for people with unknown medical conditions to look for diagnoses online was worrying, adding that the search engine was sometimes used to diagnose everything from minor symptoms to serious health conditions – which often caused paranoia in patients.
"Social media or Google can be used to gain general knowledge or information. It is informative but it does not put things in the right light.
"When you Google for health conditions, all the related symptoms will appear. When patients read this, they will assume that this is their current health condition and get scared. Without a proper consultation, they resort to other treatment. This is very worrying," he told reporters after launching the Malaysia Health and Wellness Brand Awards 2018, which was organised by Sin Chew Daily and Life magazine, here Wednesday.
Dr Chen also advised the public to consult medical professionals to diagnose health conditions since information online was not tailored and said that " what works for one may not work for others".