A good way to search for health information on the web is to go to established websites that have gathered reliable information. There are many websites that do this. The following are websites that may be useful when starting your search for health information.
Warning: There is a wealth of health information on the Internet but it should NEVER should take the place of a doctor’s professional opinion. What the Internet can do is provide you with the knowledge necessary for preventing and caring for illnesses, keep you informed on how to take care of yourself and family, and enable you to get educated enough so that you can ask the right questions when you get to the doctor’s office.
The Finkelstein Memorial Library does not review or monitor these websites nor is it responsible for their content. Your linking to such websites is at your own risk. This list is under constant revision. Links are added or subtracted due to the changing nature of the web.
Is the site's operator reputable?
Who operates the site? In some cases, the site's address provides clues. How authoritative is the source?
General Health Web Sites
.gov --- Government sponsored
.org --- From a not-for-profit agency
.edu --- Sponsored by a university
.com --- Developed by a for-profit company
which may be selling a product.
Is the site operated by a pharmaceutical company or other business that may be pushing a particular product?
Does a site receive funding from a pharmaceutical company or other firm?
Does the site list a postal address, e-mail address, and phone number where you can get more information?
Who wrote the specific document you're reading? What are the author's credentials, affiliation, or background?
Why was this written? Is it to educate, or promote a particular point of view or sell a product or service?
Does the information you're reading conflict with commonly accepted medical knowledge?
Do other sources confirm the accuracy of what you've found online?
Does the information appear to be thorough and complete?
When was the document written, and when was it placed on the Web site?
How current? Is the site updated regularly? If the last update occurred months or even years ago, be careful.
Does the site exhibit the common signs of quackery such as hearsay, testimonials like "I lost weight without trying," "My energy level increased 100 percent!"
Finkelstein Memorial Library
Choose from our various health databases.
This site from the National Library of Medicine offers access to current, accurate, in-depth medical information for both professionals and medical consumers. From here you can access "PubMed", a user-friendly version of MEDLINE, the index of professional medical journal literature, and directories of medical care providers, health organizations, and clinical trials. This site also has links to drug information from the U.S. Pharmacopeia and other sources.
National Cancer Institute
You will also find valuable cancer-related information of all kinds. For the general public, patients, and health professionals, the site offers consumer-oriented information on a wide range of topics as well as comprehensive descriptions of cancer research programs and clinical trials. Scientists will find detailed information on specific areas of research interest and funding opportunities.
the user-friendly version of MEDLINE, (above) the index of professional medical journal literature, and directories of medical care providers, health organizations, and clinical trials.
Merck Manual of Diagnosis and Therapy
An online copy of the medical handbook used by medical professionals. A compact source of information about specific diseases including causes, symptoms, current standard treatment, and prognosis. You can search with keywords to locate specific information, or use the table of contents to browse by subject.
Provides another listing of dictionaries.
Centers for Disease Control
Includes the full text of publications such as Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report, as well as travelers' health information and data and statistics. It includes links to state health departments.
Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons Complete Home Medical
This resource is the online version of this standard consumer health text. Includes listings of medical studies seeking patients.
Patients can ask questions of doctors--unlike some "ask the doctor" sites, this one meets
high standards. Free registration required.
Alternative Medicine Homepage
This page is a starting point for sources of information on unconventional, unorthodox, unproven, or alternative, complementary, innovative, integrative therapies.
MEDLINEplus: Alternative Medicine
This federal government site links to a variety of resources on complementary and alternative medicine.
American Specialty Health Resource
American Specialty Health is a leading personal health improvement organization that provides wellness/health coaching, fitness programs, and specialty managed care to health plans, insurance carriers, employer groups, and trust funds nationwide.
An overview of "alternative methods", questionable therapies and detailed reports on
unconventional treatments and sources of reliable advice. "Quackwatch, Inc., which was a member of Consumer Federation of America from 1973 through 2003, is a nonprofit corporation whose purpose is to combat health-related frauds, myths, fads, fallacies, and misconduct." The site is also available in French, German, and Portuguese.
Finkelstein Memorial Library
Choose tfrom our various health databases.
The HealthCentral Network, Inc. has a collection of owned and operated Web sites and multimedia affiliate properties providing timely, in-depth, trusted medical information, personalized tools and resources, and connections to a vast community of leading experts and patients for people seeking to manage and improve their health.
Family Doctor (American Academy of Family Physicians) All of the information within Family Doctor has been written and reviewed by the physicians and patient education professionals at the American Academy of Family Physicians.
Joint venture of Aetna U.S. Healthcare and Harvard Medical School. Drug Info offers Q&A, recent drug approvals, disease/condition specific information, poison information, etc. Site offers conveniences such as "printer-friendly formats" and easy e-mailing of pages to friends.
Mayo Health Oasis
Designed for health care consumers, this site includes numerous articles featuring Harvard Medical School's consumer health information, patient versions of drug information from the USP, a medical dictionary, a search engine, and other features of interest to consumers.
The Merck Manual Home Edition
Online full-text consumer version of the health professional's popular Merck Manual. Use the search box in the upper right corner to start.
A leading developer of interactive health and medical information for consumers, students and healthcare professionals. A.D.A.M.'s products combine physician-reviewed text, medical illustrations, multimedia, and interactive tools and technology that explain complex medical and health information in a consumer-friendly manner.
Federal Citizen Information Center
This federal site offers the full text of dozens government publications about nutrition and health topics. Some of the subjects covered include dietary guidelines, buying fresh fruits, vegetarian diets, contraceptive choices, Alzheimer's disease, cancer tests, chronic fatigue syndrome, eating disorders, headaches, depression, surgery, and skin cancer, among others.
Use the Internet to:
* find articles from medical journals, reports from the National Institutes of Health, and similar reputable organizations. Online tools such as diagnostic tests are available on your timetable.
* find a forum for a wide variety of medical issues and conditions where you can exchange information, questions and support with other people.