Table 3. The correlation between the independent variables and the effects of online searching: multiple regression analysis.
VariableFR2Age category, bDegree, bFrequency of internet use, bFrequency of internet use for health information, bFrequency of GP visits, b
GP1 11.42a 0.080.07b
Not going to the GP anymore2 4.88b−0.010.18a −0.12c
More likely to go to the GP3 3.42b 0.030.03−0.05−0.030.10c 0.11
Self-medication without advice4 5.54a 0.04− −0.08
No medication anymore5 4.72b 0.04−0.02− −0.06
Reassurance6 4.67b 0.040.03−0.01−0.040.18a −0.09
Increased anxiety7 9.50a 0.07−0.06b 0.0020.040.19a 0.22a
Increased severity of symptoms1.600.01−0.02−
Decreased severity of symptoms9 2.76c 0.02−0.03−0.002−0.030.15b −0.01
Additional symptoms10 4.48b 0.03− 0.15b
More confidence in the GP11 1.610.020.04−0.03−0.08−0.050.10
Less confidence in the GP12 5.31a 0.040.01− −0.02
  • b = regression coefficient. a P<0.0001. b P<0.01. a P<0.05. 

  • Statements 'After my online search for health information …':

  • 1 I go to the GP

  • 2 I do not go to the GP although this was the original plan before the search.

  • 3 I am more likely to visit the GP than I intended before the search.

  • 4 I start medication without consulting a doctor.

  • 5 I do not think I need medication although I did think this before the search.

  • 6 I am reassured.

  • 7 My worries about my symptoms increase.

  • 8 I have the feeling my symptoms got better.

  • 9 I have the feeling my symptoms got worse.

  • 10 I notice additional complaints I did not notice before the search.

  • 11 I have more confidence in my GP than before the search.

  • 12 I have less confidence in my GP than before the search.