Medical Reference

As someone without medical training, assessing the validity of a
medical reference is an important task. You should begin by determining
who wrote the medical reference text you are considering using. Find
out if the people who wrote it have medical degrees and also if they
have specialties in the topics about which they are writing. This issue
is key online as many medical reference websites do not have doctors or
other medical professionals writing.

While you may be
tempted to trust the first information you find, one way to verify the
validity of a specific reference site or text is to try to determine
whether or not the text under consideration has information that you
can find replicated. You want to have the same general information
available in other places. If the text you are considering varies
widely from the accepted standards on a certain medical issue, then you
should make sure that the writer explains that this opinion is
unorthodox and why. For example, the American Academy of Pediatrics
holds that ear infections and teething are not related. Many
pediatricians disagree with this opinion, but you should make sure the
person to whom you are listening can explain to you why he or she feels

Any medical reference also should have clear
information. Some texts simply are not meant for people without medical
training. Be sure that you are reading information intended for a
non-medical reader. Otherwise, you could be looking at information that
will not make sense to you. Another potential problem is giving
yourself an amateur diagnosis because you do not understand fine
distinctions. Seeking out a text intended for you should help to make
sure that you are reading information that is geared toward a general
audience that gives you succinct and easy to understand information.