Navigation Links
Google Flu Trends estimates off
Date:5/17/2010

ATS 2010, NEW ORLEANS Google Flu Trends is not as accurate at estimating rates of laboratory-confirmed influenza as CDC national surveillance programs, according to a new study from the University of Washington.

The findings will be reported at the ATS 2010 International Conference in New Orleans.

"We knew from the Google Flu Trends validation study that it is highly correlated with surveillance for the non-specific syndrome of influenza-like illness," said Justin Ortiz, M.D., clinical fellow at the University of Washington who led the study. "However, it has never been evaluated against a gold standard of actual laboratory tests positive for influenza virus infection. When we compared Google Flu Trends data to CDC's national surveillance for influenza laboratory tests positive, we found that Google Flu Trends was 25 percent less accurate at estimating rates of laboratory confirmed influenza virus infection."

Google Flu Trends uses the popularity of certain Google search queries in real time to estimate nationwide rates of influenza-like illness activity, a non-specific combination of symptoms including a fever with either a cough or a sore throat without any confirmatory laboratory testing. While some traditional flu surveillance systems may take days or weeks to collect and release data, Google search queries can be counted almost instantaneously.

The problem is that studies have shown that influenza-like illnesses are actually caused by the influenza virus in only 20 percent to 70 percent of cases during the influenza season.

"Many respiratory virus infections other than influenza can result in influenza-like illness. Furthermore, there is a wide and unpredictable proportion of influenza-like illness that is due to actual influenza virus," said Dr. Ortiz. "Because Google Flu Trends estimates of influenza-like illness may not necessarily correlate with actual influenza virus infections, we undertook this study to evaluate the validity of Google Flu Trends influenza surveillance by comparing it to a gold standard of CDC's national surveillance for influenza laboratory tests positive."

The researchers analyzed the incidence of flu outbreaks in the United States between 2003 to 2008. They found that Google Flu Trends deviated greatest from CDC surveillance for influenza virus tests positive during the 2003-04 influenza season, a year notable for early and intense influenza activity, with a high number of pediatric influenza deaths and substantial media attention to influenza.

"Internet search behavior is likely different during anomalous seasons such as during 2003-4," explained Dr. Ortiz. "We hypothesize that during periods of intense media interest or unexpected influenza activity such as the 2009 H1N1 influenza pandemic, Google Flu Trends may be least accurate at estimating influenza activity."

"Still, Google Flu Trends influenza surveillance provides an excellent public health service, because it provides nationwide influenza activity data in a cheap and timely manner," said Dr. Ortiz. "Nevertheless, our study demonstrates that its data should be interpreted with caution and that other surveillance systems more accurately reflect influenza activity in the United States."


'/>"/>

Contact: Keely Savoie
ksavoie@thoracic.org
212-315-8620
American Thoracic Society
Source:Eurekalert

Related medicine news :

1. Google's Email Security Change Does Not Make Online Counseling Secure: Online Counseling Clients and Counselors Risk Confidentiality Breach
2. Author John Gwynne Prosser II Offers "The Solution for Brain Injuries and Bankruptcies" With Free Educational Video Hosted by Google
3. IWHNA CEO Abdul Rao Encourages the Use of Google Health for Establishing a Patient-Specific Comprehensive Digital Health Record Across Enterprises
4. MathMagic Personal 4.8 for Windows Now Supports Google Docs and Zoho Equation
5. Skyscape Offers Medical Professionals Real Time Clinical Decision Application on Google Android
6. NABP Commends Googles VIPPS-Accreditation Requirement for Internet Pharmacy Advertisers
7. Pharmahelper Pleased To Recognize Online Pharmacy Practice Standards Announced By Google Adwords
8. Manymoon Now Available Through the Google Apps Marketplace
9. Bayshore Solutions Bring Facebook and Google Execs to Tampa April 27
10. PeopleStreme Human Capital Releases 'New Trends in Performance Management - 2010' Whitepaper
11. Mongoose Metrics Partners with Webtrends™ for Full-Scale Integration of Online and Offline Web Analytics Call Tracking Solutions
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:2/22/2017)... ... February 22, 2017 , ... Doctors on Liens is continuing its ... Dr. Steven H. Rauchman, practicing at North Valley Eye Medical Group in Mission ... premise liability and other personal injury cases. These injuries have a major impact ...
(Date:2/22/2017)... ... February 22, 2017 , ... The ... today, as organizations, advocates, and individuals join together to increase recognition about the ... ultimately save lives. , “Today we mark a nationwide movement to raise awareness ...
(Date:2/22/2017)... ... February 22, 2017 , ... Bellus Medical, a leader in ... the delivery of Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP). PRP systems are used by physicians ... tissue synthesis and provide a faster and more efficient healing process. There are ...
(Date:2/22/2017)... ... February 22, 2017 , ... The SeniorCare Investor will ... Forecast —on Thursday, February 23, 2017, at 1:00 PM ET. A recording of the ... of the Interactive Webinar Series. , If you want to find out what really ...
(Date:2/22/2017)... ... February 22, 2017 , ... FPS is ... combat-related PTSD. , Established in 1977, our organization was at the forefront in ... returning to civilian life were evident and served as the catalyst for the ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:2/21/2017)... Patient Monitoring Equipment ... monitor physiological signs. These devices are either used as ... monitoring is one of the key factors for the ... market. Hence, vendors are developing technologically advanced products that ... send test results on time and provide better patient ...
(Date:2/21/2017)... Feb. 21, 2017 Micro Guide Catheters ... http://www.reportlinker.com/p04711314-summary/view-report.html Micro Guide Catheters ... hospitals, specialty clinics and ambulatory surgery centers etc. ... tip. The selection of micro guide catheter depends ... in human body. Micro guide catheters are available ...
(Date:2/21/2017)... IBM ) Research has today announced new research developments ... retina. The Melbourne based IBM researchers ... in retina images, which could in the future offer doctors ... who may be at risk of eye diseases – such ... world. The research began in 2015 and ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: