Huh’s advice to newly diagnosed patients who are seeking an online resource for peer support is to investigate the websites of non-profit organizations.

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Some become active users who post comments daily; others simply scan the conversations but never post.

UC San Diego researcher James Fowler, in his book , writes that a key factor in determining our health is the health of others.

“The tutorial reminds you to look for evidence backing medical claims and other tips for validating information.”Huh says that Google does a good job of filtering out forums with bad reputations.

Google Page Rank Algorithm, the rule-based process Google uses to rank search results, helps to qualify sites by calculating who is linking to them.

For information to be deemed valid, they require empirical evidence.

Adventurers are looking for cutting-edge information or tips on alternate therapies and treatments, such as off-label drug uses not offered by their clinicians or local hospitals.

“We are affected not only by the health and behavior of our partners and friends, but also by the health and behavior of hundreds or thousands of people in our extended social network.” So if you’re inside a network that’s purely focused on a chronic disease such as diabetes or perhaps late stage breast cancer, how is your health affected?

Researchers at UC San Diego have looked into whether posts within these common interest sites influence surgical decisions.

Marmor and a group of UC San Diego colleagues conducted a 2016 study to explore the controversy of why so many women with non-genetic breast cancer were requesting contralateral prophylactic mastectomy, even though the operation did not improve their survival.“We expected to find that women in these online rooms would discuss surgical options, including risks and benefits,” said Marmor, an informatics fellow and surgery resident at UC San Diego School of Medicine.

“Surprisingly, we found that 95 percent of posters had already undergone surgery.

They jump into the online rooms, get their answers, leave and don’t go back.