Please note that websites linked to this page are not part of South Shore Hospital. We strongly recommend that you consult your physician before making any medical decisions.
South Shore Hospital has many programs to help keep you well and to support you when you're in need. This section offers links to websites which contain information on diseases and medical conditions, general health, and regional health centers.
American Heart Association
Centers for Disease Control
Food and Drug Administration (FDA)
Healthfinder: a service of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services
Massachusetts Hospital Association
National Institutes of Health
National Library of Medicine
World Health Organization
Health Care Quality Links
American Medical Association
National Committee for Quality Assurance
Consumer Health Resources on the Internet
The following resources for consumer health information were selected by South Shore Hospital and may be helpful in answering a wide range of health and medical questions. These sites were selected according to criteria based on content, design, currency, authority, and ease of use.
Biomedicine and Health in the News - An index of articles appearing in the New York Times that reference medical and scientific studies reported in journal literature. Includes citations to medical journal article and link to journal web site. Archived from 1995 to present. Key word searching of entire database.
CNN Interactive Health - Top medical news stories of the week with links to related CNN stories and web sites. Key word searching of entire database.
Advance Medical Directives
It's wise while you are healthy to designate someone you trust to make health care decisions on your behalf in the event you are unable to make your own. Call the concierge at (781) 624-4300 for a free advance medical directives (health care proxy) kit.
You can also visit www.putitinwriting.org for help with advance medical directives.
Alcohol and Drug Information
National Clearinghouse for Alcohol and Drug Information - Information on substance abuse prevention and facts about alcohol and drug use for parents, youth, teachers, and prevention specialists. Contains over 8,000 prevention materials for adults.
National Institute on Alcohol Abuse & Alcoholism - A wealth of information on alcohol-related health issues. Pamphlets, brochures, clinical trials, database links, and FAQ’s. Information in English and Spanish.
Allergies, Asthma, Lungs
American Academy of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology - The Academy’s Patient and Public Resource Center offers information on asthma and allergic diseases, including food and latex allergies, pollen and spore counts, news stories, and physician referral service.
Food Allergy Network - General information for consumers. Research, product alerts, recipes, selected articles from their print newsletter.
Asthma and Allergy Information from Intelihealth - Visit the Allergy and Asthma Health Areas (listed under the “Diseases and Conditions” menu.) General information about diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of allergies and asthma.
YourLungHealth.org - Learn about lung health and diseases of the lungs.
Respiratory Diseases - From the National Jewish Center for Immunology and Respiratory Medicine, information for consumers on bronchitis, hay fever, chronic obstructive lung disease, parenting the asthmatic child, croup.
Alternative Medicine Homepage - From the Falk Library of the Health Sciences, University of Pittsburgh – a jumpstation for sources of information on unconventional, alternative, complementary, innovative, and integrative therapies.
American Botanical Council - Herbal medicine information.
National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine - General information about alternative and complementary therapies, with links to research studies currently being conducted on alternative therapies for addiction, aging, AIDS, cancer, asthma, stroke, neurologic conditions, and women’s health.
Rosenthal Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine - Links to resources on acupuncture, homeopathy, chiropractic, and herbal medicine and alternative therapies for cancer and women’s health. The Center sponsors research on alternative and complementary medical practices.
back to top
American College of Rheumatology - Patient information fact sheets on arthritis and rheumatic diseases, including Sjogren’s syndrome, scleroderma, gout, and fibromyalgia. Links to professional rheumatology web sites.
Arthritis Foundation - Information on different types of arthritis and rheumatic diseases, including fibromyalgia, as well as research and current news. Select “Resource Room” for fact sheets, brochures and information on how to order other publications. Current information on Juvenile Rheumatoid Arthritis is included under the section “Starting Points”. See also the arthritis information page on MedlinePlus.
National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases - Information for the consumer on osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, arthritis pain treatment, polymyalgia rheumatica, giant cell arteritis.
Arthritis Foundation - Information about the different forms of arthritis and rheumatic diseases, treatments, surgery, alternative therapies, exercise. See also the topic “Arthritis” in MedlinePlus.
American Cancer Society - Information for patients and families on diagnosis and treatment, cancer prevention, alternative treatments, links to other cancer resources.
American Institute for Cancer Research - Learn how to make simple changes in your diet to reduce your cancer risk. Recipes, information on free publications, and links to cancer and nutrition sites are included.
Cancer.gov - From the National Cancer Institute, information on cancer for the patient and the health professional. Includes information on cancer prevention, causes, genetics, and support resources. Has summaries of cancer treatment protocols from the Physician Data Query (PDQ) database with statements for the patient and for the physician.
Cancer Trials - From the National Cancer Institute, search for information on 1,500 current research studies on cancer. Includes information defining clinical trials, how to search for studies, how to participate.
Complemenary/Integrative Medicine Educational Resources - From the M.D. Anderson Cancer Center at the University of Texas, Houston, this site has evidence-based reviews of complementary or alternative cancer therapies, as well as links to other authoritative resources. These reviews evaluate the designs and the results of published research on herbal, mind-body, energy, nutrition, and other biological / organic / pharmacologic (e.g., cartilage) substances.
OncoLink - The best cancer resource on the Internet. Information for physicians and patients on causes, diagnosis, current treatment protocols, screening, emotional support, clinical trials, complementary therapies, and more. Entire site is searchable.
American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry - “Facts for Families” series offers information on topics including bedwetting, children and divorce, the child with autism, helping teenagers with stress, the depressed child, and many other child and adolescent mental health-related topics.
American Academy of Pediatrics - The leading medical authority on children’s health. “You and Your Family” section offers a car-seat buying guide and an air bag and car seat safety checklist, information on immunizations, how to help children become better readers, ordering information for AAP publications, including a children’s media guide. Reviews of pediatric Internet resources.
Child and Family Web Guide - Developed by Tufts University, this site describes and evaluates web sites that contain research-based information about child development. Categories include education and learning, health and mental health, family and parenting, and typical development.
Children’s Environmental Health Network - Learn how environmental pollutants and hazards affect children’s health. A resource guide has information on the health effects of specific toxins, how to protect children from environmental hazards, links to related organizations, and Internet resources.
FDA Kids Home Page - A kids web page created by the FDA, this site offers sections on food safety. Other interesting features are drug definitions for the contents of the home medicine cabinet, as well as information on diseases and vaccines. “YORICK” the bionic skeleton explains the working of mechanical parts. A top-notch site.
KidsHealth - Resources for children, parents, and professionals on children’s health issues.
Kidshealth For Teens - Teens can use this site to find information on eating disorders, health snacks, moods, feelings and a question and answer format dealing with sexuality.
Kids Like Me With ADHD! - Explains ADD and offers information on coping and medications, and recommends additional resources for parents and kids.
back to top
Clinical Research Trials
Cancer Trials - From the National Cancer Institute, search for information on 1,500 current research studies on cancer. Includes information defining clinical trials, how to search for studies, how to participate.
Center for Information & Study on Clinical Research Participation (CISCRP) - CISCRP is a non-profit organization focused on educating and informing the public about clinical research participation.
Center Watch - Information on clinical trials for 20 disease categories. Profiles of 150 research centers conducting clinical trials, and profiles of companies that provide a variety of contract services to the clinical trials industry. Includes industry and governmen-sponsored clinical trials and information on new drug treatments approved by the Food and Drug Administration.
Clinical Trials - Information on current research being conducted on treatments for different diseases. Browse by disease category and sponsor or search the entire site. Learn what clinical trials are all about and how to decide to participate in a trial.
ABLEDATA - Sponsored by the National Institute on Disability and Rehabilitation Research, this database has over 25,000 assistive technology products from domestic and international sources. Includes fact sheets on how to evaluate and select products and links to disability-related web sites.
Disability Resources Online - Hundreds of disability-related topics, including advocacy, Americans with Disabilities Act, education, employment, housing, independent living, legal rights. From a nonprofit organization that provides information about resources for independent living.
National Rehabilitation Information Center (NARIC) - Although at times difficult to navigate, this site has excellent information on many disability topics. Incorporates information from NARIC’s five databases and links to disability-related web sites.
Diseases, Medical Conditions, General Health
800AgeInfo.com - 800AgeInfo is a joint effort between the MA Executive Office of Elder Affairs and Mass Home Care Association. Provides information to help you make good decisions concerning care for the elders of Massachusetts and to help elders find the resources they need to maintain their independence and to improve their quality of life.
Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons Complete Home Medical Guide - Full-text version of the print edition. General health and wellness, using the health care system, first aid and safety, diagnostic procedures, medications, and treatment and prevention of disease.
Familydoctor.org - From the American Academy of Family Physicians (AAFP), this site offers patient education documents for common medical concerns and conditions. All of the information within familydoctor.org has been written and reviewed by physicians and patient education professionals at the AAFP.
Healthfinder - From the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, a gateway to consumer information on diseases, medical conditions, health promotion, and many other topics.
Intelihealth - From Harvard Medical School, information on diseases and medical conditions, health and fitness, medications, nutrition, childbirth, and other topics.
Mayo Clinic - From the famed Mayo clinic, information on diseases, treatments, fitness, diet, disease prevention, drug information, and first-aid/self-care. Special features include answers to your questions from Mayo specialists, health decision guides to help patients make informed decisions about treatments, and a free email newsletter.
MEDLINEplus - Information on over 400 diseases and medical conditions written for the consumer, with links to relevant citations and abstracts of medical journal articles. Includes a separate drug information section, medical dictionary and encyclopedias, and directories.
Merck Manual of Medical Information – Home Edition - A general guide for consumers on diseases and their treatment, women’s, men’s, and children’s health, and accidents and injuries. Complete online version of their text edition.
National Institutes of Health (NIH) - Fact sheets on diseases and medical topics from NIH clearinghouses. Clinical practice guidelines for specific diseases (select “Agency for Health Care Policy and Research”); current research studies funded by NIH.
NOAH (New York Online Access to Health) - English and Spanish language information and resources from organizations and governmental agencies. Aging, cancer, asthma, eye diseases, foot and ankle disorders, and pain are just a few of the topics covered.
Diseases, Medical Conditions – Specific
Alzheimer’s Association - Treatment information, new drugs, current research, caregiver’s resources, and links to other Alzheimer’s resources.
American Diabetes Association - Learn the basics about diabetes, keep current with news related to diabetes, and link to community resources. See also the topic “Diabetes” in MedlinePlus.
Diabetes, Digestive and Kidney Diseases - An excellent source for information on diabetes, digestive diseases, kidney diseases, and endocrine and blood disorders from the National Institute of Diabetes, Digestive and Kidney Disease. Includes many Spanish language publications.
Hepatitis - Information from the American Liver Foundation on Hepatitis A, B, and C, including treatment, prevention, and liver transplantation. Also has information on other diseases that affect the liver, such as biliary atresia and cirrhosis. For additional information see MedlinePlus under hepatitis and hepatitis C.
Multiple Sclerosis – National Multiple Sclerosis Society - Up-to-date information on the diagnosis and treatment of multiple sclerosis. Includes The Society’s sponsored news stories related to MS, resources for living with MS, advocacy information, contacting local chapters. See also information about MS on the MedlinePlus website.
back to top
Drugs: Prescription and/or Over-the-Counter
Center for Drug Evaluation and Research, U.S. Food & Drug Administration - New and generic drug approvals, database of adverse drug reactions, recent clinical alerts on drug products, and AIDS clinical trials database. Electronic version of “Approved Drug Products and Their Therapeutic Equivalence Evaluations”.
CenterWatch – Clinical Trials Listing Service - Information on drug products currently under investigation, arranged by disease category. Entries give brief descriptions of research and contact information. Listing of FDA drug approvals, guidelines to help individuals decide whether to participate in a study, and general information on how drugs are studied.
MedlinePlus Drug Information - Drug information from the U.S. Pharmacopeia Drug Information – Advice for the Patient. Profiles of more than 9,000 prescription and over-the-counter drugs with information on approved uses for the drug, proper use of the drug, precautions while using the drug, and side-effects.
Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry - Access to TheHazDat Database, the Agency’s hazardous substance/health effects database. Also includes public health statements on hazardous substances. Special section for children and parents includes health effects of hazardous substances on children.
Environmental Protection Agency - Information about clean water, lead poisoning, radon, reducing solid waste. Advice on reducing environmental health risks at home, in the garden, community, and workplace. Includes resources for children. Online versions of EPA’s 7,000 publications.
Household Products Database - What's under your kitchen sink, in your garage, in your bathroom, and on the shelves in your laundry room? Do these household products pose a potential health risk to you and your family? Find out what's in these products and what are the potential health effects, and other safety and handling information.
Tox Town - An interactive guide to commonly-encountered toxic substances.
Health Care Providers
AMA Physician Select - Gives credentials of MDs and DOs, including medical school, year of graduation, and specialties.
American Hospital Directory - Profiles of U.S. hospitals. Basic service is free; more detailed information by paid subscription only.
HospitalLink - A gateway to the homepages of hospitals on the web. Includes U.S. and International hospitals.
The Joint Commission (formerly Joint Commission on the Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations) - The Quality Check feature on this site supplies details on individual hospital performance ratings from The Joint Commision’s accreditation reports. View Performance Reports and compare institutions’ ratings. Reports cover hospitals, nursing homes, ambulatory care facilities, home care, laboratory services, and long-term care facilities.
Nursing Home Compare - Provides detailed information about the performance of every Medicare and Medicaid-certified nursing home in the country. Searchable by state. Includes a guide to choosing a nursing home and a nursing home checklist to help in making informed choices.
Health Care Proxy
It's wise while you are healthy to designate someone you trust to make health care decisions on your behalf in the event you are unable to make your own. Call the concierge at (781) 624-4300 for a free advance medical directives (health care proxy) kit. You can also visit www.putitinwriting.org for help with advance medical directives.
Heart Disease / Stroke
American Heart Association - Heart disease and stroke treatment and recovery, risk assessment, prevention, exercise, nutrition, “Heart and Stroke A-Z Guide.”
American Stroke Association - A division of American Heart Association. Stroke care, stroke programs, recovery, risk assessment, prevention, exercise, nutrition, “Heart and Stroke Encyclopedia," "Stroke Connection Magazine."
Heart and Vascular Disease – National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute - For patients and professionals, information on heart disease, heart attack, high blood pressure, obesity, exercise, and cholesterol. Information for African-Americans. Some publications available in Spanish.
Congenital Heart Disease Information and Resources - For professionals and consumers: information on child and adult congenital heart disease, links to Internet resources, book reviews, discussion.
National Aphasia Association - Resource for information aphasia. Find support groups. Learn about research, current news, and links.
National Stroke Association - Stroke prevention and treatment, rehabilitation, self-care and activities of daily living, current research, news releases, risk assessment, Be Stroke Smart newsletter.
back to top
Massachusetts Health Resources
Massachusetts Board of Registration in Medicine - Profiles of physicians licensed in Massachusetts. Public information includes press releases on disciplinary action and other topics of interest to the citizens of Massachusetts.
Massachusetts Department of Public Health - Health topics, publications, statistics and programs.
Medical Tests / Diagnostics
Medical Tests Online - Includes a library of tests, brief information on diseases and medical conditions and the tests used for each, recommendations on preventive screening, news about technology that has an impact on diagnostic lab testing, and feature-length articles on topics related to laboratory testing.
Normal Laboratory Values – Merck Manual - Normal ranges for over 150 laboratory tests.
Tests and Procedures – MedlinePlus - Interactive tutorials on 18 common tests and diagnostic procedures and 40 surgeries and treatment procedures.
American Academy of Family Physicians – Men’s Health - Information pamphlets on a range of health topics, including prostate cancer screening, hypertension, diet, lowering cholesterol, and lifestyle.
Ask NOAH About: Men’s Health - Bilingual health information site. Sponsors include the New York Academy of Medicine and the New York Public Library. Includes basic health information, and information on fertility, impotence, surgery, prostate, safer sex, stress, and testicles. Includes a Spanish list of resources.
Healthfinder – Just for You: Men - Links to full-text information on health topics of interest to men: prostate health, baldness, Viagra, sports medicine, heart disease, and more.
What About Men’s Health - Part of the National Women’s Health Information Center. For men and to help women learn about the health concerns of the men in their lives. Links to full-text information on alcohol and drug use, prostate health, health risks, violence prevention. Information for special groups: minorities, college age men, older men.
American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry - “Facts for Families” series offers information on bedwetting, children and divorce, the child with autism, helping teens manage stress, the depressed child, and other child and adolescent mental health-related topics.
American Psychological Association (APA) - APA’s Help Center offers facts on mental health and disorders, work-related issues, teen violence, family relationships. Guides on choosing a therapist and what to expect from therapy.
American Psychiatric Association (APA) - APA’s Public Information section includes online versions of their popular booklets on topics such as Alzheimer’s, eating disorders, post-traumatic stress disorder, phobias, and schizophrenia.
National Alliance for the Mentally Ill (NAMI) - Information on mental disorders, medications, and research.
back to top
American Diabetes Association - Information about diabetes for African Americans includes specific community program suggestions, diabetes risk test online, background information on diabetes and its prevalence in the African American community, and a resource list of related websites.
National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute - “Prevent High Blood Pressure” booklet online. One of a series of seven easy-to-read booklets on “Improving Cardiovascular Health in African Americans” available in their entirety on this website.
Office of Minority Health Resource Center - National resource and referral service on minority health issues established by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. The “Minority Groups” section under Health Links includes African American-related websites.
Nutrition and Diet
Aim for Healthy Weight - Developed by the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute, this site offers information for patients and health professionals on maintaining a healthy weight. Tools are provided to assess your risk for certain diseases affected by excess weight.
American Dietetic Association - Nutrition news, fact sheets on popular topics, bibliography for the public, and links to other nutrition-related sites.
Body Mass Index - Body mass index (BMI) is the measure of body fat based on height and weight that applies to both adult men and women. Calculate your BMI and view the table to see if you are overweight.
Caloric Control Council - Information on cutting calories and fat in your diet, achieving and maintaining a healthy weight, and low cal/low fat recipes. A Calorie Calculator provides a quick analysis of the calorie content of the foods you eat.
Food and Nutrition Information Center – U.S. Department of Agriculture - Learn about food safety, food pyramid, dietary supplements, guidelines for healthy eating, and other important nutrition topics.
Mayo Clinic Food & Nutrition Center - Information on nutrition basics, supplements, weight management, and a virtual cookbook are all featured on this site. Sign up for online newsletter for weekly updates of information.
Nutrition Source – Harvard School of Public Health - This comprehensive site offers timely information on diet and nutrition for clinicians, health professionals, and the public. A useful section helps the user interpret nutrition information in the news. Other sections answer common questions.
Quackery and Health Fraud
National Council Against Health Fraud - Non-profit voluntary health agency focusing on health fraud, misinformation, and quackery as public health concerns. Read their position papers on acupuncture, homeopathy, chiropractic, and other health issues.
Quackwatch - Want information about whether those alternative therapies work? This site has information on health fraud, medical quackery, “new age” medicine and “alternative” and “complementary” medicine.
Spanish and Other Language Resources
Agency for Health Care Research and Quality - Site has publications in Spanish on topics such as how to prevent medical errors, angina, cataracts, pain control, questions to ask before surgery, depression, urinary incontinence, rehabilitation after a stroke, Alzheimer’s disease, and others.
MEDLINEplus – National Library of Medicine - The Spanish language version of MedlinePlus, which includes most of the Health topics found in the original English version. Users can easily switch between the English and Spanish version of the information.
National Institute of Diabetes, Digestive and Kidney Diseases - Publications on urologic and kidney diseases, diabetes, and digestive diseases.
National Cancer Institute - Spanish language publications for consumers on topics including chemotherapy, tips on how to eat less fat, breast cancer, the importance of regular Pap tests, radiation therapy, and smoking cessation. (Scroll to bottom of page to access Spanish language publications.)
NOAH – New York Online Access to Health - Spanish language information and resources from organizations and governmental agencies. Aging, cancer, asthma, eye diseases, foot and ankle disorders, and pain are just a few of the topics covered.
back to top
Family Caregiver Alliance -Information, services and support for caregivers and families of victims of long-term, chronic and terminal conditions. Includes “Fact Sheets” in English, Spanish and Chinese on various conditions and issues.
FirstGov for Seniors Health Section - This site provides access to all government agencies that provide services for seniors. The idea is for seniors to be able to search for government information and programs that meet their needs without having to know the name of the agency responsible for that service.
MedlinePLUS Seniors - Direct links to health information and issues of concern to senior citizens.
Merck Manual of Geriatrics - A free full-text geriatric care manual, this 3rd edition includes information ranging from health care funding and quality of life to injuries, diseases and care issues as they particularly affect seniors. Chapters on diseases typically cover symptoms and diagnostic tests, causes and treatment choices, and complications.
American Cancer Society - Guide to quitting smoking.
American Lung Association - Information and support for people who want to quit smoking.
Massachusetts Tobacco Cessation and Prevention Program (www.makesmokinghistory.org) -- Dedicated to reducing the health and economic burden of tobacco use.
American College of Surgeons - Public information section offers guidelines on choosing a qualified surgeon.
Tests and Procedures – MEDLINEplus - Interactive tutorials on 18 common tests and diagnostic procedures and 40 surgeries and treatment procedures.
YourSurgery - Information with graphics on common medical procedures, including cataract removal, carpal tunnel release, hernia repair, mastectomy, and more. Once free, this site now charges $5.00 to view a single procedure or $100 for a one-year membership with unlimited access.
Centers for Disease Control - International travelers section gives vaccination requirements, warnings of disease outbreaks in countries, health hazards for specific countries, and other pertinent information.
Ask NOAH About: Women’s Health - Sponsors include The City University of New York, The New York Academy of Medicine, and The New York Public Library. Contains basic health information for women about normal conditions, such as puberty, sexuality, pregnancy, birth control/contraception, and menopause. Also contains information about abnormal conditions, such as eating disorders, endometriosis, menstruation problems and concerns, osteoporosis, sexually transmitted diseases, and urinary tract infections.
HHS Office on Women’s Health - The Office on Women's Health in the Department of Health & Human Services (HHS) is the government’s champion and focal point for women’s health issues, and works to redress inequities in research, health care services, and education that have historically placed the health of women at risk. Contains links to National Centers of Excellence in Women’s Health, National Community Centers of Excellence in Women’s Health, minority women’s health, girl and adolescent health, older women’s health, reproductive health, violence against women, HIV/AIDS in women, breast health, environmental health, international health, and much more.
Health Web: Women’s Health - From the University of Wisconsin, links to websites devoted to women’s health, including comprehensive resources and specific topics, such as breast cancer, osteoporosis, rheumatoid arthritis.
Resolve – the National Infertility Association - General information on infertility, treatments, how to find a specialist, information on state chapters, and links to organizations.
back to top