What is helpful, and what is damaging?
CureFacts rating was designed to enable everyone to intuitively understand which medical treatments to consider, and which to avoid.
Our Cure Rating includes 6 capsule icons that differ from each other by color, smile, and subtitle:
Here is a short explanation about each of these capsule icons:
Helpful - this treatment provides significant benefits and is relatively safe. It is a helpful treatment, and should be considered as a good option for treating the specific medical condition that is mentioned in the card.
Insignificant - this treatment provides some minor benefits and is relatively safe. It is insignificant in treating (or preventing) the specific medical condition that is mentioned in the card. If other treatments, that are helpful, exist, it is better to avoid this insignificant treatment and to prefer the helpful treatments instead.
Mixed - this treatment provides significant benefits but also strong side effects. It provides mixed effects - since it is both helpful and dangerous in treating (or preventing) the specific medical condition that is mentioned in the card. When there are other treatments that are helpful (and less risky), it is better to avoid this treatment and to prefer the helpful treatments instead.
Ineffective - this treatment does not provide benefits and is relatively safe. It is ineffective in treating (or preventing) the specific medical condition that is mentioned in the card. Look for better alternatives and avoid this treatment. Using this treatment is a waste of resources (time, money, efforts), it may do some harm (minor side effects and interactions with other medications), and it delays the usage of better treatments, that may lead to a deterioration in the medical condition.
Damaging - this treatment causes severe side effects and is dangerous. It is damaging, and the risk it brings does not justify the benefits it may offer. This treatment should not be used. It is advisable to look for better options instead.
Unclear - there is not enough scientific evidence about the effects of this treatment. It is unclear whether or not it is risky, and whether or not it is effective in treating (or preventing) the specific medical condition that is mentioned in the card. Using this treatment is a like a bet, and will result in an unknown outcome. Therefore, it is advisable to look for better options instead.
The overall Cure Rating of each medical treatment is determined by taking into account the evidence (all valid clinical trials) that exists about this treatment, and how effective and safe it seems to be according to the accumulating evidence. CureFacts also provides a rating for each of these variables (evidence, effectiveness and safety) separately, as shown here:
The level of evidence, effectiveness and safety for a specific medical treatment to a specific medical condition is determined by using a combination of secondary variables. For example, the level of evidence is determined by taking into account how many different clinical trials were done, how many individuals participated in these trials, who conducted the systematic review, and more.
Most of the secondary variables, including all the variables mentioned above, are derived from systematic reviews, which provide the highest level of scientific evidence. In addition, we sometimes use complementary variables derived from other resources, to improve our rating. For example, the level of safety also depends on post-marketing data on side effects (which was not available during the initial clinical trials).
By using its proprietary rating algorithm, CureFacts turns raw data about medical treatments into an overall Cure Rating (Capsules) and into evidence, effectiveness and safety rating (circles). This way we fulfill our mission - to take the most reliable scientific data (from systematic reviews), and to turn it into clear-cut accessible information to all (with infographics and plain language).