Doctors warn of dangers of 'quick-fix' online health experts

The Sharjah Ramadan Majlis was told that some people are seeking help on the internet rather than from medical professionals

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Medical experts have spoken out over the dangers caused by increasing self-diagnosis in the social media age.

Dr Ahmed Abdelmalek, from Kuwait, told the Sharjah Ramadan Majlis that many people were going online to identify their ailments and finding their own medication rather than seeking the support of trained and authorised healthcare professionals.

During the majlis, entitled Common Medical Misconceptions, Between Right and Wrong, Dr Abdelmalek said online tutorials and self-styled experts are no replacement for qualified medics.

"A qualified and trained physician takes a number of factors into account while examining and treating a patient, something that online experts and unknown sources cannot do," he said.

Dr Abdel Nasser bin Salem, an adviser at the Ministry of Health, called for action to be taken against those professing to provide "get-well quick" solutions online.

Dr Muawia Al Elaiwi, a paediatrician in Saudi Arabia, called for greater public awareness of healthcare provisions to ensure people did not look in the wrong places for help.