November 30, 2018

Predatory Journals – Where you get your healthcare information matters

Author: Dr. Erin Babineau

In the world where fact checking and credible sourcing is frequently referenced in the media, it can get to a point where you don’t want to hear those words uttered from anyone’s mouths anymore, let alone mine. But I will tell you that not only is it important to have good credible sources with all things you look up online, it’s of utmost importance in the healthcare world. Because it directly affects you and your body and therefore your overall health.

Why am I bringing this up now? You’ve heard people bring up, “careful what you read on the internet”, but for real – Careful what you read on the internet! Everyday you most likely encounter multiple messages in your inbox that state, “scientific evidence that this will help you reduce knee arthritis” or “greetings! See how you can lose 10 lbs from an MD recommended regiment”. These are most likely coming from some sort of predatory journal. These predatory journals are a fraud, and they truly threaten scientific literature with false or very low-quality research. Predatory journals blatantly publish any information for a fee. Recently Cook et al. (2018) submitted an article to a predatory journal called “Manual Therapy Cures Death”. The study stated that manual therapy revived a man who had been dead for 5 years. And it got published. For a fee. No peer review done. Enough said.

Cook et al. defines a predatory journal as, “an open-access publisher that actively solicits and publishes articles for a fee, with little or no real peer review. To date, there are almost 9000 predatory journals…Within the world of scientific publishing, predatory journals fit the genre of supermarket tabloids.” A lack of peer review is important, because fake or fabricated research published can compete with scientifically sound and legitimate research that has been peer reviewed and scrutinized before it was submitted to the public world.

I am really passionate about who and where you get your healthcare information from because it actually matters. Be careful where you find your resources because just about anyone can submit a fabricated article if they pay the right price. That’s why finding a trusted healthcare professional is important. When you find a trusted provider who can lead you to quality resources and best management strategies, with the the top evidence available that fits your health beliefs, it allows you to take care of yourself with confidence.


Beall J. Predatory journals exploit structural weaknesses in scholarly publishing. 2018;1:1.

Cook et al. Manual Therapy Cures Death: I Think I Read That Somewhere. Journal of Orthopaedic & Sports Physical Therapy, 2018 Volume:48 Issue:11 Pages:830–832 DOI:10.2519/jospt.2018