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This article was originally published in The Tan Sheet

Executive Summary

Only 3% of health information Web sites' references to phenylpropanolamine's weight loss properties provide "more than minimal coverage" and "completely correct" information, while 17% discuss PPA's stroke risk to same degree, Gretchen Berland, MD, UCLA, et al., conclude in study on Web health content's accessibility, accuracy and ease of understanding in May 23/30 Journal of the American Medical Association. Researchers evaluated 14 search engines' ability to connect users to appropriate sites and 25 Web sites' content and reading grade level. Forty-seven percent of online references to St. John's wort met the "more than minimal coverage" and "completely correct" criteria regarding botanical's use for mild depression and potential drug interactions; mere 7% of references to ephedra and weight loss were rated as up to par. Overall, only 19% of information on dietary supplements' general safety and effectiveness met study's standard
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