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Website: thevillagedoc
Business: The Village Doctor
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Unlike some physicians, I support the appropriate use of supplements and vitamins for my patients. Having said that, I would like to explain the use of supplements in clinical practice. The supplement industry is unregulated and many of the supplements that are touted to be useful are not only dangerous, but are also ineffective. Just because a supplement is "natural," does not mean that is safe. To compound this situation, some folks who work in stores that sell "natural" products do not have the academic background that qualify them as reliable sources of information. Supplements are drugs, and like any drug that is prescribed, the use for it must be determined by scientific studies. One must understand the risk and reward, which is the danger of using a particular supplement versus the benefit. All drugs, including supplements, can be useful if given for the right indication. Some supplements have side effects, and the patient and provider need to discuss the risks and benefits before initiating a supplement. Making the decision to take a supplement is not as simple as a watching an infomercial, reading an advertisement or talking to a merchant. In my opinion, vitamins and supplements have a prominent place in modern medicine. The patient must be thoroughly informed about the benefits and possible side effects by a qualified healthcare provider.
Submitted on: 3/4/2010
Thursday, March 4, 2010
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The Village Doctor
PO Box 158  
Winter Harbor, Maine, 04693, 
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Wed:9 - 5
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