As of 2015, a total of 236.62 million people aged 25 and above have been diagnosed with peripheral artery disease (PAD) worldwide. This study aims at analyzing public interest in PAD in the United States (US) using Google Trends (GT) and predicting future trends using statistical analysis.
Material and Methods:
We used GT to analyze the volume of google web search, google images search, and video search all over the US for the term ‘peripheral artery disease’ between 2004 to 13th June 2020 for web search and 2008 to 13th June 2020 for the rest. We then predicted future trends for these searches by using the IBM SPSS software (Armonk, NY, USA) for the next eight years. We also plotted graphs and maps for these variables.
The numbers obtained from the GT search represent search interest relative to the highest point on the graph (100) for the given region and time. A value of 100 is the peak popularity for the term. A value of 50 means that the term is half as popular. There was an upward trend (from 55 to 80) in PAD web search from January 2019 to 13th June 2020. The SPSS forecasting traditional model predicted PAD web search would trend between 70-80. Image searches showed an upward trend from September 2014 to December 2019, followed by a dip in 2020. Video searches increased from January 2013 to March 2017, followed by a decrease from May 2017 to July 2020. The popularity of image and video searches is predicted (image search- 55 to 65; video search- 0 to 30) to be unaffected in the upcoming years. The cities and states with the top 3 PAD searches are Phoenix, Philadelphia, Boston, West Virginia, Indiana, and Kentucky, respectively. Los Angeles, San Diego, San Francisco, New Hampshire, North Dakota, and Idaho remained the cities and states with the least PAD searches.
There is a high demand for trend analysis and interpretation in medicine to help with resource allocation and personnel training. We identified that there has been an upward trend in the searches for PAD, and it is likely to remain so due to the aging population in the US and modification of lifestyle. In our study, we also highlight major cities and states with the maximum number of PAD searches, which give us a clue to its incidence in those areas and can help with the implementation of preventive programs and mobilizing resources.