A Quality Assessment of Cardiac Auscultation Material on YouTube




YouTube is a highly utilized Web site that contains a large amount of medical educational material. Although some studies have assessed the education material contained on the Web site, little analysis of cardiology content has been made. This study aimed to assess the quality of videos relating to heart sounds and murmurs contained on YouTube.


We hypothesized that the quality of video files purporting to provide education on heart auscultation would be highly variable.


Videos were searched for using the terms “heart sounds,” “heart murmur,” and “heart auscultation.” A built-in educational filter was employed, and manual rejection of non-English language and nonrelated videos was undertaken. Remaining videos were analyzed for content, and suitable videos were scored using a purpose-built tool.


YouTube search located 3350 videos in total, and of these, 22 were considered suitable for scoring. The average score was 4.07 out of 7 (standard deviation, 1.35). Six videos scored 5.5 or greater and 5 videos scoring 2.5 or less. There was no correlation between video score and YouTube indices of preference (hits, likes, dislikes, or search page). The quality of videos found in this study was highly variable. YouTube indications of preference were of no value in determining the value of video content. Therefore, teaching institutions or professional societies should endeavor to identify and highlight good online teaching resources.


YouTube contains many videos relating to cardiac auscultation, but very few are valuable education resources.

The authors have no funding, financial relationships, or conflicts of interest to disclose. 1