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Health Fraud

Also called: Health scams, Quackery
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Health fraud involves selling drugs, devices, foods, or cosmetics that have not been proven effective. Keep in mind - if it sounds too good to be true, it's probably a scam. At best, these scams don't work. At worst, they're dangerous. They also waste money, and they might keep you from getting the treatment you really need.

Health fraud scams can be found everywhere, promising help for many common health issues, including weight loss, memory loss, sexual performance, and joint pain. They target people with serious conditions like cancer, diabetes, heart disease, HIV/AIDS, arthritis, Alzheimer's, and many more.

To protect yourself, recognize the red flags such as:

  • Miracle cure
  • Quick fix
  • Ancient remedy
  • Secret ingredient
  • Scientific breakthrough

Before taking an unproven or little known treatment, talk to a doctor or health care professional - especially when taking prescription drugs.

Food and Drug Administration

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Videos and Tutorials

  • Video (Federal Trade Commission)

Journal Articles References and abstracts from MEDLINE/PubMed (National Library of Medicine)

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