Purpose: To evaluate the readability and quality of patient-oriented information online among different common prosthodontic search areas using multiple quality and readability assessment tools.
Materials and methods: The prosthodontic keywords most commonly searched by patients on the internet were included. The search was performed through two online search engines (Google and Yahoo) to create the study sample. The first 50 websites listed by each search engine were chosen for each keyword. The quality of each website's information was evaluated using the DISCERN questionnaire and the Health on the Net (HON) criteria. Readability assessment was performed using the Flesch-Kinkaid Reading Grade Level (FKRGL) and the Flesch Reading Ease Score (FRES).
Results: A total of 225 websites were included in the study. The median score for the DISCERN instrument indicated poor information quality. A significant difference was found between the educational and commercial websites in both quality and readability. Overall, the median readability indices showed that the websites' information was difficult to read.
Conclusion: Internet-based health information on different prosthodontic treatments is difficult to read and poor in quality and readability. It is necessary for health care providers to establish and promote websites that have reliable, high-quality information about common prosthodontic treatments.