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I enjoy when patients educate themselves regarding the options to make their experience more comfortable.

Most of us google symptoms, and we sometimes self diagnose before we decide to see a doctor (or not). But be careful, this can be problematic. We can create panic for no real reason. Searching for a particular symptom can bring you to the wrong conclusions and sometimes drastic ones, like big surgeries or even cancer. In consequence, it creates anxiety. In this day and age, with the internet at our fingertips, millions have become "cyberchondriacs!" This is defined as a person who compulsively searches the internet for information on real or imagined symptoms of illness. 

The internet covers many health issues, from the simplest to the most severe. It is not uncommon to exageratte your case and convince yourself that your situation is worse than it actually is. This search can turn patients into a new type of hypochondriac, scared by the internet and genuinely distressed, sometimes leading to unnecessary visits to the emergency room, urgent care or physician offices. This will cause patients to spend time and money on unnecessary tests and treatments. 

My wish is that your visit with me, will be a be a partnership with a mutual understanding, allowing you to gain a clearer, more accurate idea of your situation. Please, share your fears with me, wether that's your anxiety after searching on google or nervousness by anything else! 

Author
Daniel A Rostein MD FACOG, Fertility Specialist. Fertility Specialist . Minimal Invasive Surgery. Assistant Professor at Loyola Medical School

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