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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Dermatology Online Journal

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Understanding the influence of social media in medicine: lesson learned from facebook


Atopic dermatitis is a very common chronic skin disease. With increasing number of patients searching social media outlets such as Facebook for medical information, social media can be used by physicians as a powerful educational tool. We analyzed the unmoderated Q&A series on Facebook begun by members of National Eczema Association Scientific Advisory Committee. Four respondents accounted for more than 50% of all responses and the most common were negative posts about topical steroids (61%). Possible strategies to accomplish the safe dissemination of information in a public forum may include a moderator role for physicians.

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