Diagnosing your doctor online. Love it or hate it? Leave your comments.

By Courtney Lane - bio | email

TYLER, TX (KLTV) - Online, you can rate restaurants, hotels, music, everything, but now your doctor? Some web sites are getting a lot of attention that allow people to post reviews about physicians. But where do you draw the line? Many doctors are concerned and trying to take steps to protect themselves.

Rate MD's.com, Angie's list, and vitals are several sites where you can grade your doctor.

"I looked on leapfrog I tried to look up health grades," said Dr. Barbara Allen.

Dr. Allen checked out reviews before her mother had knee surgery, but in the free forums of comments, she said it was difficult to find anything trust-worthy.

"I'm trying to wade through the opinions which were the waiting room wasn't the right color, the temperature in the exam room wasn't right or personality conflicts with staff, versus the actual quality outcome of the procedure," she explained.

Still, some East Texans say the sites are a helpful tool.

"It would be kind of nice to know, oh every time you go to this place you're going to wait an hour and a half or something," said Laura Jenz.

Yet some doctors worry their practice could be hurt just because of a spiteful comment, or graded on their personality rather than skill.

"I think it's critical people are able to make data driven decisions not just opinion driven decisions when it comes to something as important as their health care," said Dr. Allen.

Doctors are fighting back. Thousands are asking patients to sign a waiver, so they can't post negative comments. We didn't hear of any East Texas doctors doing that, and some say they'd never agree to it.

"If somebody says you can't say anything bad about me or you can't give your opinion about me, that would definitely send up a red flag," said Byron Davis Sr.

So should you rate your doctor just like a hotel or restaurant? Dr. Allen may sum it up best...

"Education, information is power but we have to take anything that we get off the Internet with a bit of a grain of salt," said Allen.