I've seen a couple of questions that I think I can answer, but I'm not a medical professional, just someone interested in medical sciences who likes to research and read scientific literature. If I meet the reference requirements for what makes a good reference, is it ok if I answer a question even though I'm not a medical professional?

  • Just a hint: Since you wrote "a couple": start with a slow pace and see how it goes down here when answering one question at first. May 9, 2018 at 10:43
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    And btw: Welcome to Health.Meta! May 9, 2018 at 10:45
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    Wow, please hang around!
    – Carey Gregory Mod
    May 11, 2018 at 4:06

2 Answers 2


We welcome all contributions. We cannot ascertain your professional credentials in any way anyway.

If the answer is good, then that is all that counts. You seem to have read the relevant parts of the help center and here on meta about reliable resources and what we think would make for a nice, good or great answer (or in fact bad ones as well).

If you meet the quality standards we aim for here then this is a most desirable addition.

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    Adding on that, there are not many health professionals active here. Our two mods, as an example, are neither full-time health professionals. We don’t aspire to be a doctor‘s Ask Me Anything, and this is the main reason why we need references: Like any science, the medical sciences work with studies and proofs.
    – Narusan
    May 9, 2018 at 19:38

The answer has to be a resounding YES, as I find in my case a personal experience with a particular medical condition has caused me to become more knowledgeable about the symptoms, causes, and effective medicines and home remedies than your typical pediatrician. Furthermore, not everyone has access to high quality medical care in all instances, and for some depending on the condition, the internet is the only viable option.

I'm sure others out there who've been dealing with their own health issues have become their own experts, and it is this community of experience that creates value. Yes, I and 99 other users may only be experts in combined 100 different diseases, but when you add it all up it creates a valuable knowledgebase that can complement professional medical diagnosis or even supplant depending on the severity of the condition and access to health care.

  • Thank you for your answer. I agree, and want to emphasize the importance of providing references. Some people (including some doctors like you might see on certain TV shows!) are well-read in subjects, yet deviate from evidence-based healthcare. That's partly why even doctors here must provide reference.
    – DoctorWhom
    Aug 29, 2018 at 3:42
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    Full agreement here. Experience is one legitimate approach. Just one thing: here it is absolutely mandatory to add references to your experienced knowledge. These two factors combined make for probably a great answer here. So it's +1. Aug 29, 2018 at 12:48

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