Separating Fact From Fiction In The World Of Medicine

Medicine is hugely important for all of us. We use medicine and the medical profession to remain healthy and to treat illnesses, and we place a lot of trust in those people and ideas. As such, it is important that we can be fully aware of what is true and what is not, and that can be something that takes a lot of effort and time to really get to grips with. The worrying truth is that there is plenty of misinformation and lies spread around about various medical concerns, and over time this leads to a lack of understanding and a lack of trust in the medical professional if we are to improve our relationship with our doctors, we need to be able to separate truth from fiction. So what are the signs of a medical fact which we can trust to be reliable?

Using Common Sense

 

Sometimes, it is obvious enough that something is probably not true or has been exaggerated. This will be because by using your common sense you can see how it is unlikely to make much sense at all. More often than not, simply applying your common sense will ensure that you can accurately separate fact from fiction, and this is a vital first step when presented with anything which is being put forward as a scientific fact. Does it seem likely to be true? If so, how can you be sure? By thinking logically in this way, you can be much more certain of finding out what information is going to benefit you and what is unlikely to do so. Use your common sense, and you will save yourself a lot of trouble in the long run.

 

Who Is Telling You?

 

One of the most important things to try and discern is to work out who is telling you the information. This is important because it is often the case that an individual or organization might have an agenda which makes their information dispense untrustworthy or incomplete. If you can work out who is telling you the information in question, you are much more likely to be able to determine the likely validity of the fact you are being presented with. Sometimes it can be hard to figure out who is the one presenting the information. In those cases, you should take what you are being told with a pinch of salt. This can be especially difficult online, and it is often true that with online information you want to be especially careful.

Look At The Study Behind The Fact

 

If what you are being presented with is an honest and genuine medical fact, then you should be able to find the study behind it that has led to this information. If the individual offering the information is not able or willing to provide such a source, that is immediately concerning. But even once you have been given links to the studies supporting the fact, you need to look into the studies themselves. Studies are not to be automatically trusted, as they can be false and misleading and are not necessarily representative of the truth.

 

A good study should have controlled the variables as well as possible, it should repeat its findings a number of times, and it should have a strong design. Often, these criteria are not met, and in those cases you really can’t be sure of the validity of any aising information from such a study. A good example is found in the information about nootropics like Huperzine A, often said to cure Alzheimer’s. These studies are rarely the kind that you can trust, and as such you should be careful with this kind of information. As long as you can trust the study, however, you can generally trust the findings.

The Value Of Second Opinions

 

It is always a good idea to seek out a second opinion, and we are not just talking about when you see your doctor here. You should do this at all times, especially with anything you read online, and you should be careful about who your second opinion is coming from. Gathering second opinions – or third and fourth, even – will ensure that you can know whether or not to trust a particular piece of information. If it is generally accepted by a number of trusted professionals, then there is no reason you can’t trust that information. If it is not, however then you might want to reconsider what you believe.

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Author: James McQuiston

Ph.D. in Political Science, Kent State University. I have been the editor at NeuFutur / neufutur.com since I was 15. Looking for new staff members all the time; email me if you are interested. Thanks!

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