How do you identify trustworthy health information?

Posted by John, Volunteer Mentor @johnbishop, Jun 25, 2020

Do you ever see something on TV or on the Internet and think, maybe this is what I need to help me? It can be really difficult to identify trustworthy health claims made by advertisers. I subscribe to a few health newsletters from Mayo Clinic and McMaster University and this morning I saw this article that had some great tips on how to identify trustworthy health information.

Don't believe the hype: 6 tips to identify trustworthy health information: https://www.mcmasteroptimalaging.org/blog/detail/blog/2017/05/02/dont-believe-the-hype-6-tips-to-identify-trustworthy-health-information

Here's some of the criteria I use when searching for trusted health information:
– Is it from a credible, reliable evidence-based source? Who wrote it?
– Is it recent and/or regularly reviewed and updated?
– What is the advertising policy or financial support for the website? Are they just after my money?

What criteria do you use to identify trustworthy health information?

@lioness

I follow Clevelad clinic and Mayo ,John Hopkins these 3 are the best

Jump to this post

I think it depends greatly on what you are seeking. I find good info on some of the sites like the NIH.gov, CDC.gov, American Lung Association for my lungs, Council on Aging, AARP for elder issues, etc.

For rare or "orphan" conditions, sometimes extra research is needed. Sites ending in .edu usually represent real research. It used to be that way for .org too, but that has been coopted so you need to be careful.

Even more important, in my opinion, is to look for published and peer-reviewed studies and information. Much of what we see from day to day on the Web as research is "sponsored" – another name for advertising, or "studies" that are nothing more than promotional literature for a specific pharmaceutical company, doctor's group, or company promoting their own latest product or service. This is also true in electronics, cars, appliances…but really scary if relied on for life or death decisions.

Sue

REPLY
@sueinmn

I think it depends greatly on what you are seeking. I find good info on some of the sites like the NIH.gov, CDC.gov, American Lung Association for my lungs, Council on Aging, AARP for elder issues, etc.

For rare or "orphan" conditions, sometimes extra research is needed. Sites ending in .edu usually represent real research. It used to be that way for .org too, but that has been coopted so you need to be careful.

Even more important, in my opinion, is to look for published and peer-reviewed studies and information. Much of what we see from day to day on the Web as research is "sponsored" – another name for advertising, or "studies" that are nothing more than promotional literature for a specific pharmaceutical company, doctor's group, or company promoting their own latest product or service. This is also true in electronics, cars, appliances…but really scary if relied on for life or death decisions.

Sue

Jump to this post

@sueinmn I totally agree I like the nih.gov like you said it depends 9n what you need but be careful of not well known sites

REPLY

…sorry cant find a place for this or anyone interested in and doesnt get emails from USA or Canada, drug recalls etc? I am in Canada and many time certain lot numbers of Metformin are recalled and I nudge my spouse to ask Pharmacy about it but not sure if he does! My pharmacy at the time once was dispensing a RECALLED lot of Norflox but wouldnt tell me if mine had been from that lot, new pharmacy puts the Lot number on the bottle of pills! If no one interested I wont put up any more:

Acella Pharmaceuticals, LLC, Issues Voluntary Nationwide Recall of Certain Lots of NP Thyroid® (Thyroid Tablets, USP) Due to Sub Potency
Audience: Consumer, Patient, Health Professional, Pharmacy
April 30, 2021 — Acella Pharmaceuticals, LLC, is voluntarily recalling certain lots of 15-mg, 30-mg, 60-mg, 90-mg and 120-mg NP Thyroid®, Thyroid Tablets, USP [levothyroxine (T4) and liothyronine (T3)] to the consumer level. The products are being recalled because routine testing has found these lots to be sub potent.

REPLY
@lacy2

…sorry cant find a place for this or anyone interested in and doesnt get emails from USA or Canada, drug recalls etc? I am in Canada and many time certain lot numbers of Metformin are recalled and I nudge my spouse to ask Pharmacy about it but not sure if he does! My pharmacy at the time once was dispensing a RECALLED lot of Norflox but wouldnt tell me if mine had been from that lot, new pharmacy puts the Lot number on the bottle of pills! If no one interested I wont put up any more:

Acella Pharmaceuticals, LLC, Issues Voluntary Nationwide Recall of Certain Lots of NP Thyroid® (Thyroid Tablets, USP) Due to Sub Potency
Audience: Consumer, Patient, Health Professional, Pharmacy
April 30, 2021 — Acella Pharmaceuticals, LLC, is voluntarily recalling certain lots of 15-mg, 30-mg, 60-mg, 90-mg and 120-mg NP Thyroid®, Thyroid Tablets, USP [levothyroxine (T4) and liothyronine (T3)] to the consumer level. The products are being recalled because routine testing has found these lots to be sub potent.

Jump to this post

I get a weekly or monthly (?) email newsletter about pharmaceuticals. It includes both recaslls and info regarding new drug approvals and trials. Next time I get one, I'll post the limk.
Sue

REPLY
@sueinmn

I get a weekly or monthly (?) email newsletter about pharmaceuticals. It includes both recaslls and info regarding new drug approvals and trials. Next time I get one, I'll post the limk.
Sue

Jump to this post

Here's the link to the latest FDA Recalls, Market Withdrawals, & Safety Alerts – https://www.fda.gov/safety/recalls-market-withdrawals-safety-alerts

REPLY
@johnbishop

Here's the link to the latest FDA Recalls, Market Withdrawals, & Safety Alerts – https://www.fda.gov/safety/recalls-market-withdrawals-safety-alerts

Jump to this post

so shall we leave it for people to check or put them up here…? thanks

REPLY
@lacy2

so shall we leave it for people to check or put them up here…? thanks

Jump to this post

I think reminders for the latest info is always important (and great!) when it comes to pharmaceuticals. I just thought this one was good because you can filter/sort the list by different classifications to find the latest information from the FDA on a specific drug.

REPLY
@lacy2

so shall we leave it for people to check or put them up here…? thanks

Jump to this post

Hi Lacy –
I think we should leave it to each person to do their own checking – the number and variety of meds subject to recalls and/or new warnings/cautions is so broad that it would be a chore to wade through. I think second-hand postings of all recalls are outside our purview here on Connect.

That said, it would be great when people become aware of recalls for specific meds, they post a link in the appropriate group or discussion. For example Metformin on the Diabetes group, Losartan on the blood pressure group, Thyroid meds on the Thyroid group, etc.

As I said, when I have a link to the newsletter, I will add it; those who are interested can subscribe.

Sue

REPLY

yes i agree with what is said, we can each check ourselves, otherwise might miss an important one to put up here,,, thanks for the feedback… j.

REPLY

This is such an important topic…thanks for bringing it up and for all the great information from people who posted. One website I rely on is WorstPills/BestPills. It's a project of the nonprofit organization Public Citizen and can be found at: http://www.worstpills.org. Their independent scientists and doctors evaluate prescription drugs and issue alerts when they identify problems. I consider the annual $15 membership, which includes a monthly newsletter and unlimited access to their site to research individual medications and read journal reports, articles, and consumer guides to be a real bargain. As an example, several free consumer guides are now featured on the website: Ten Rules for Safer Drug Use, Drug Induced Eye Toxity (62 drugs listed), 29 Medications that might cause adverse interactions with thyroid medications, Introduction to drugs that might cause cognitive impairment. Although I've learned a lot from them, I've gotten a little wary of all the functional medicine practitioners and so-called or self-proclaimed experts promoting the keto diet and other things who sell their own line of supplements and must be raking in a lot of money through sales and endorsements of other sites and products. I've appreciated the ones who have said outright that money from the sales of their products goes directly into a foundation for research or for producing more YouTube videos. Anyway, it's unfortunate that it is so difficult to be a conscientious consumer, so I really appreciate all these suggestions.

REPLY
@sueinmn

I get a weekly or monthly (?) email newsletter about pharmaceuticals. It includes both recaslls and info regarding new drug approvals and trials. Next time I get one, I'll post the limk.
Sue

Jump to this post

Is there a link to this Sue?

REPLY
Please sign in or register to post a reply.
  Request Appointment