Brits are lying to their GPs about symptoms

5 February 2013

Millions of Britons are lying to their GP because they are worried about hearing what their symptoms might mean.

New research by found that people in the UK are more likely to speak to a friend or relative or even check symptoms online rather than visiting the local GP.

But even when Brits do visit the doctor’s surgery, around 14 per cent of patients have admitted to lying to a nurse or doctor about their symptoms.

A third said this was because of embarrassment and a quarter said they were worried about what their diagnosis might be.

A further 20 per cent said they were worried about being told they need to make lifestyle changes.

Dr Sarah Jarvis, clinical consultant at, said that given how much information there is online it is no surprise people are self-diagnosing.

However, she added: “I would always encourage people to seek advice from trusted sources, whether that be a GP, health professional or a clinically-backed website, so that patients can be confident that they are receiving the correct information.”

Posted by Jeanette Royston

Health News is provided by Adfero in collaboration with Spire Healthcare. Please note that all copy above is ©Adfero Ltd. and does not reflect views or opinions of Spire Healthcare unless explicitly stated. Additional comments on the page from individual Spire consultants do not necessarily reflect the views or opinions of other consultants or Spire Healthcare

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