Some Online Videos Provide Better Intravitreal Injection Guidance Than Others

Nurse teaching woman booking online appointment
Mature female nurse teaching senior woman booking appointment on laptop at home
The online videos seemed to offer the most useful patient information with regard to pain at the injection site, according to the study.

Online videos may provide some moderate benefit to patients seeking information regarding intravitreal injection procedures, but “physicians must be careful to correct any misunderstandings,” according to research published in Journal Français d’Ophtalmologie.

This retrospective, cross-sectional study evaluated the quality, reliability, and reception of YouTube videos referencing intravitreal injection procedures. 

Videos were collected for the study using the search terms “intravitreal injection,’’ ‘‘intravitreal injection treatment,’’ ‘‘eye injection,’’ ‘‘eye injection treatment,’’ ‘‘dexamethasone intraocular injection,’’ ‘‘anti-VEGF injection,’’ ‘‘Ozurdex,’’ ‘‘Lucentis,’’ and ‘‘Eylea’.’ 

The team collected and analyzed a total of 111 videos. Mean video length was 4.30 minutes and narration was performed by ophthalmologists in 64.9% of the videos. More than a quarter (27,9%) of the videos were published by channels representing private hospitals, 15.3% represented individual ophthalmologists, 40.5% represented health experts, and 16.2% of the channels were categorized as “other.”

The researchers documented video durations, total views, number of likes, number of dislikes, and number of comments (which was used to create a video power index [VPI]) and analyzed public reception of the videos. Additional analysis of video content was completed using the DISCERN questionnaire, JAMA score, and the Global Quality Score (GQS). The DISCERN scoring system evaluates the reliability and quality of videos based on responses to 15 questions, scored from 1 to 5, with totals categorized as excellent (63-75 points), good (51-62 points), moderate (39-50 points), poor (27-38 points), or very weak (15-26 points). The GQS evaluates the educational aspects for patients on a 5-point Likert scale (1 point indicates the lowest quality, 5 points indicates excellent quality). The JAMA scoring system evaluates the source of medical information obtained from health-related websites for accuracy and reliability. It ranks them by offering 1 point each for authorship, attribution, disclosure, and validity. 

The mean DISCERN score was moderate at 45.39±9.7, mean GQS scores was 1.76±0.49, and the mean JAMA score 3.60±0.84 (P =.001). The mean VPI was 12.16±35.56 (0-277.80), with no correlation found to the scores of video content. Videos uploaded physicians themselves had the highest DISCERN (48.82±6.31), JAMA (1.94±0.55) and GQS (3.38±0.78) scores compared with the other groups, but the lowest VPI scores (8.02±14.13 vs 12.16±35.56). “Videos uploaded by doctors can be difficult for patients to understand,” researchers explain. 

Health care websites also had high DISCERN (45.42±10.44), JAMA (1.80±0.40), and GQS (3.50±0.78) scores, but had higher VPIs than the physicians-uploaded clips (19.64±53.06). Commercial and patient-created channels, and clips from television shows, had relatively high VPI scores (9.05±17.55), but low DISCERN (mean 38.06±10.25), JAMA (mean 1.33±0.48), and GQS scores (mean 3.29±0.91). 

Researchers conclude that most videos about the procedures provide “detailed information about the level of pain that may occur during the injection,” according to the analysis. “We think that the information about the local anesthesia applied before the [injection] is valuable as patients fear the pain and this data helps to relieve their concerns.”

This study is limited by the data collection process, which occurred during a fixed period and does not account for the constantly expanding information available online. Additionally, setting variations were not accounted for while collecting data.  


Seyyar SA, Mete A, Tiskaoglu NS. Evaluation of YouTube videos as a patient information source on intravitreal injections procedures. J Fr Ophtalmol. June 11, 2022. doi:10.1016/j.jfo.2022.02.023