From UPI.com: The actual headline used for the article was, Online reviews of plastic surgeons are unreliable. I lopped of the unreliable part because if you read the article the authors do not really make the case that reviews are unreliable. They just state that reviewers take things like customer service into account rather than pure surgical results.
“Our study shows what’s almost equally important are things we wouldn’t have thought of, like how quickly we answer the phone, how nice the staff is in their interactions, the wait time and bedside manner. Service is becoming paramount and almost as important as tangible results and outcomes,” he said.
Frankly I think it is naive on the part of the researchers to assume patients and other online reviewers would be able to judge surgical results and would not comment on the service and experience.
Plastic surgeons are not dentists never the less I believe it is reasonable to extrapolate the results to dentistry, especially cosmetic dentistry. I also believe that for the most part dentists are much more customer service oriented than physicians.
The take away for dentists is that patients do write reviews. Reviews do matter when people are making a decision on which dentist to see. Reviewers have limited ability to comment on treatments however they will comment on the experience.