Healthcare // Patient Tools
News
3/28/2012
12:40 PM
Paul Cerrato
Paul Cerrato
Slideshows
Connect Directly
Twitter
RSS
E-Mail
50%
50%

Is That Healthcare Website Making You Sick?

Many healthcare websites provide valuable information that can help prepare you for the next doctor's visit. But some serve up misinformation that just might land you in the hospital. Here's how to tell the difference.
Previous
2 of 9
Next


A healthy dose of skepticism is in order if you decide to work your way through cancertutor.com. An article by R. Webster Kehr of the Independent Cancer Research Foundation, Inc. claims a natural approach to cancer can cure more than 90% of patients, while more traditional cancer treatment has been shown to cure only 3%. Why the huge difference? In Kehr's view, it's because treating "patients safely with natural products would dramatically reduce the profits of the medical community and the pharmaceutical industry."

Like many other health-related websites, Kehr's site stresses distrust of the medical establishment, patient testimonials, and statistics from individual doctors. Patient testimonials can be persuasive, but they are tough to judge for honesty. Similarly, these statistics, like any medical statistics, need some scrutiny. For example, of the 90% of patients who claim they were cured by a natural remedy, how many were followed up a year later to see if they relapsed? How many may have felt better but never had the necessary X-rays or CT tests to prove their tumors had shrunk? How can you be sure that patients whose tumors actually did shrink were experiencing the benefits of the treatment and not some other developments in their lives? For example, did the person move from a house near a toxic dump to a safer environment? Did the person give up smoking? Factors and variables like these are rarely mentioned when unconventional practitioners discuss "survival" stats.

RECOMMENDED READING:

Pick Up Your Smartphone: The Doctor's Calling

Walgreens' Facebook Site Adds Health Advice

7 Health Education Tools For Patients

11 Telemedicine Tools Transforming Healthcare

Social Gaming Helps The Medicine Go Down

9 Tech Innovations For Your Health

Elderly Patients Want Docs To Explain Technology

Previous
2 of 9
Next
Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Register for InformationWeek Newsletters
White Papers
Current Issue
InformationWeek Tech Digest September 18, 2014
Enterprise social network success starts and ends with integration. Here's how to finally make collaboration click.
Flash Poll
Video
Slideshows
Twitter Feed
InformationWeek Radio
Sponsored Live Streaming Video
Everything You've Been Told About Mobility Is Wrong
Attend this video symposium with Sean Wisdom, Global Director of Mobility Solutions, and learn about how you can harness powerful new products to mobilize your business potential.