[Meta] What should we do about serious medical questions?

by (11555) Updated May 30, 2012 at 10:46 PM Created May 30, 2012 at 9:48 PM

How should we answer questions that may be beyond the level we should be dealing with? How do we know what that level is?

(brought on by a particular question, but really applies to a lot of questions I've read here)

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4 Replies

3227 · May 30, 2012 at 10:41 PM

Just throw out the first thing that comes to mind, it's pretty silly to look for answers to serious medical questions at "Paleo Hacks," what's next "Hack My Brain Tumor"?

People link to photos of their poop for God's sake.

1957 · May 30, 2012 at 10:46 PM

"I think you should see a doctor immediately."

8753 · May 30, 2012 at 10:21 PM

I think sometimes it's helpful to have a variety of answers to a question, sometimes we search for answers or spend months/years trying to figure out issues with our physician and get no where.

Posting a question can often prompt multi answers in completely different directions, but might actually be more helpful than you think...ie: sharing personal experiences with others with similar issues and different diagnosis and remedies one might not have thought to consider.

4176 · May 30, 2012 at 10:03 PM

Most people search the internet for help through exasperation at a lack of answers from textbook style doctors. The internet is such a rich resource, there's no need to abstain from advice on serious issues, because as with most the advice comes with a disclaimer to visit the doctor also. We'd be hamstrung by a decision to disregard questions that might pertain to serious health problems imo

I appreciate your concern but I'm not really sure what you're proposing the alternative be. If someone is desperate for answers, having not found them with a doctor, to then have people on the internet say 'no, we can't help you, it's too serious' this could be quite damaging, almost dangerous

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