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Twitter-Assisted Diagnosis

I have many reasons to use Twitter. One of them is that it’s quite easy to get feedback from doctors who also use Twitter for communication. Now one of my stories was featured in the New York Times.

Some people are even using Twitter for more urgent questions. Bertalan Meskó, a medical student at the University of Debrecen in Hungary, wrote a post about a patient with mysterious symptoms: “Strange case today in internal medicine rotation. 16 years old boy with acute pancreatitis (for the 6th! time). Any ideas?”

Within hours, specialists worldwide had responded, suggesting gallstones, lupus or growths on the pancreas. One of the suggestions helped the doctors with a diagnosis.

“It would have been impossible to find that specialist through e-mail, because we had no idea who to contact,” Mr. Meskó said.

*This blog post was originally published at ScienceRoll*


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