Ethical Evaluation of Medical Advertising with Emphasis on Nano-health Products

Original Article | Pages: 2 - 13
  • Fatemeh Domanloo - MA of Philosophy, Faculty of Letters and Humanities, The University of Tehran, Tehran, Iran []
  • Amir Hossein Khodaparast - Assistant professor at Iranian Institute of Philosophy, Tehran, Iran
  • Zohreh Mohammadi - School of Medicine, International Campus, Iran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran


Background: In production and commerce, the most powerful tool the players possess to compete with each other is advertising. The more powerful and efficient the tool is, the more serious the consequences of its improper use would be. Accordingly, advertising must be applied in accordance with relevant ethical standards and criteria. Compliance with these criteria is particularly important in medical advertising, which directly affects the lives and health of the individuals.

Methods: This research has been conducted on the basis of descriptive, normative and analytical methods and its data has been collected through printed sources such as books and articles besides internet resources in English and Persian.

Results: The disregard for complying with the advertising ethics and moral precepts of advertising can have many adverse effects on the society including medicalization, the formation of unreasonable and irrelevant expectations in individuals, allocation of therapeutic funds to unnecessary therapeutic needs, the tension between doctor and patient relationships and the exploitation and abuse of vulnerable groups.

Conclusion: The study of various types of advertising and their consequences in society indicates the exigency in compiling and elaborating ethical guides and monitoring the adherence to conducting the guides in the field of advertising. Indeed, respect for human dignity, the necessity to consider the level of understanding and knowledge of the audience, respect for public dignity, the avoidance of unfounded claims and the sensitivity to social responsibility, are the most common and most crucial moral principles that can be introduced in advertising. Due to complexity and uncertainty of the effects of using nano-health products, the general moral principles governing medical advertising are also dominant in promoting these products, and novelty and effectiveness of nano-products can not eliminate the ethical evaluation in the advertising process of them.


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Domanloo F, Khodaparast AH, Mohammadi Z. [Ethical Evaluation of Medical Advertising with Emphasis on Nano-health Products]. Iran J Biomed Law Ethics. 2019;1(1):2-13. Persian.