Medical Information and How to Find It on the Invisible Web

Medical symbol
Tetra Images/Getty Images

The Invisible Web has a goldmine of medical databases and specialized medical sites that just don't show up on a cursory search in the search engines. Best of all, this information is free. Please note: Online medical information should never substitute for the expertise of a real, live doctor. If you or someone you love needs medical attention, make sure you get it. The links in this article are for informational purposes only.

General Medical Information Sites on the Invisible Web

  • The Center for Disease Control and Prevention: Enormous amount of medical information here, from genetics to environmental health.
  • NOAH: "provides access to high-quality full-text consumer health information in English and Spanish that is accurate, timely, relevant and unbiased."
  • National Library of Medicine Gateway: just what it sounds like; a jumping off point to a variety of medical information databases.
  • Medscape: Medscape "offers specialists, primary care physicians, and other health professionals the Web's most robust and integrated medical information and educational tools."
  • Medicare has a very useful database in which you can search for a good nursing home. Search by geography, proximity, or you can search by name.
  • The National Library of Medicine, "the world's largest medical library", is an incredible resource. I was able to find a lot of great information here.
  • If you're researching anything to do with a virus, check the All the Virology on the Web database first.
  • An extremely fascinating site is BioEthics Web. Check out the theory of ethics, genetic issues, search by region, etc.
  • The National Cancer Institute is a great site. Search for information about any type of cancer, clinical trials, cancer topics, etc. In addition, you can find cancer statistics and all kinds of info about national research into the disease.
  • The United States Department of Health and Human Services is a searchable database of anything to do with human health, including safety and wellness, drugs and food, reference, aging, and more.
  • From the American Academy of Family Physicians comes, health information for the entire family. Nicely organized into searchable subject directories as well as alphabetized listings.
  • Harvard Medical School has, a collection of medical database information as well as journals, papers, and web links.
  • Everything you ever wanted to know about the process of aging can probably be found at AARP's Internet Resources on Aging. This site is organized into searchable subject categories.
  • Information about substance abuse and mental health can be found at SAMHSA, a site put together by the US Department of Health and Human Services.
  • The World Health Organization has an excellent site, WHO Health Topics, organized alphabetically. You can also check out world policies on disease and emergencies.
  • is a search engine for many specialized medical databases. You can customize your search to the Web, MedPro Search, Basic Search, or you can choose which specific medical database you'd like to browse; such as, MediWarp, or the National Cancer Institute (among others).
  • The Merck Manual of Medical Information: One of the largest medical information sites on the Web today.
  • "a digital library of authoritative medical information for all students of medicine."
  • OmniMedicalSearch: a meta search engine for a variety of medical information sites, including PubMed, the CDC, and the NIH.
  • FindArticles Medical Information: find all sorts of journal and database abstracts with FindArticles.

Specialized Medical Information Sites

  • Medical Mnemonics: "A free, non-profit, online searchable database of medical mnemonics to help remember the important details."
  • Medlogs: a large medical information news aggregator; pulls medical information from a large variety of online journals and sites.
  • Medical and Health Sciences Libraries on the Web: a collection of university health and medical libraries on the Web; large collection here of some pretty fantastic medical information databases.