The presentation of health-related search results and its impact on negative emotional outcomes

Carolyn Lauckner, Gary Hsieh

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionpeer-review

39 Scopus citations

Abstract

Searching for health information online has become increasingly common, yet few studies have examined potential negative emotional effects of online health information search. We present results from an experiment manipulating the presentation of search results for common symptoms, which shows that the frequency and placement of serious illness mentions within results can influence perceptions of symptom severity and susceptibility of having the serious illness, respectively. The increase in severity and susceptibility can then lead to higher levels of negative emotional outcomes experienced-including feeling overwhelmed and frightened. Interestingly, health literacy can help reduce perceived symptom severity, and high online health experience actually increases the likelihood that individuals use a frequency-based heuristic. Technological implications and directions for future research are discussed.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationCHI 2013
Subtitle of host publicationChanging Perspectives, Conference Proceedings - The 31st Annual CHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems
Pages333-342
Number of pages10
DOIs
StatePublished - 2013
Event31st Annual CHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems: Changing Perspectives, CHI 2013 - Paris, France
Duration: Apr 27 2013May 2 2013

Publication series

NameConference on Human Factors in Computing Systems - Proceedings

Conference

Conference31st Annual CHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems: Changing Perspectives, CHI 2013
Country/TerritoryFrance
CityParis
Period4/27/135/2/13

Keywords

  • Health literacy
  • Negative effects
  • Online health information

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Software
  • Human-Computer Interaction
  • Computer Graphics and Computer-Aided Design

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