Sunday, December 21, 2008

Internet diagnoses: Trust them or toss them? |

Internet diagnoses: Trust them or toss them? | "The Internet offers immediacy, an advantage at night or on the weekend. It offers anonymity, which is helpful when a symptom seems too embarrassing to discuss with your doctor. It also offers more detailed information than your doctor might have time to provide.

But the Internet also has erroneous information that can lead you to believe that pounds can literally melt away and cures exist for incurable diseases. A recent YouTube video that has been viewed thousands of times depicts a treatment that claims to reverse the effects of the Alzheimer’s disease, for which no cure currently exists. If miracle cures existed, everyone would know about them, including your doctor.

That is one of the reasons you shouldn’t use the Internet in a vacuum. Another is that looking symptoms up online can be confusing — and frightening — when you lack medical expertise, since there are seemingly endless possibilities to consider."

Like everything else, the net has pros and cons. Smart patients know how to use this sensibly - and smart doctors will teach their patients how to use the internet well !

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