Where can you find reliable, up-to-date information about cancer online?
The staff at the Upstate Health Sciences library strives to connect the community with health information on cancer and many other medical topics. Visit the library website by clicking on the link above or here and connect with a medial librarian by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling 315-464-7091.
The library staff also recommends the following sources for understandable, trustworthy cancer information:
Information and links to resources for the types of cancer treated at the center and general patient information. Choose from the alphabetical list of cancer types in the left menu for more information. If you have any questions about this site, you can call Upstate Connect at 855-964-HOPE (4673) for help.
Information on cancer from the National Cancer Institute, a component of the National Institutes of Health, includes information on treatments, clinical trials, relevant research, prevention, genetics, causes and articles available from the PubMed database (a free database of medical articles curated by the National Library of Medicine).
This nationwide nonprofit organization offers a wide range of information about cancer, including its prevention and treatment, healthy living, news and research.
A not-for-profit alliance of 25 of the world’s leading cancer centers, the NCCN is dedicated to improving the quality, effectiveness and efficiency of care provided to patients with cancer. The site provides translations of the NCCN clinical guidelines, meant to help patients with cancer talk with their physicians about the best treatment options for their disease. Although some parts of the site require a sign-in, a large amount — marked as free or for patients — is free and open to the public.
This is the National Institutes of Health’s website for patients and their families and friends, about cancer as well as other topics. The site is easy to search, and the search results are reviewed by medical librarians at the National Library of Medicine.
A note on other websites
If you are looking for medical information at sites other than the ones listed here, Upstate’s medical librarians offer these tips, adapted from the Medical Library Association:
- Check to see if you can easily identify who is sponsoring the site, to help establish its dependability and credibility.
- The Web address can often help identify the nature of the site: government agencies have .gov in the address; educational institutions have .edu; professional organizations such as scientific or research societies have .org; and commercial sites have .com (including some hospitals).
- The site should be updated frequently, as health information changes constantly, and be consistently available, with the dates of the latest revisions posted.
- Factual information should be clearly presented and verifiable, with its source materials listed or linked to. Opinions should be labeled as such and identified as coming from a qualified professional or organization.
- The site should clearly state whether the information is intended for the consumer or the health professional. Many health information websites have two different areas, one for consumers, one for professionals.
This article appears in the winter 2017 issue of Cancer Care magazine. Hear an interview with Cristina Pope, director of the Upstate Medical Sciences Library, on searching for general medical information online.