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///2018 Abstract Details
2018 Abstract Details2019-08-02T15:57:01-05:00

Evaluation of ASA Twitter utilizaiton

Abstract Number: T5D-5
Abstract Type: Original Research

Elizabeth MS Lange MD1 ; Benjamin Chu BS2; M. James Lozada DO3; Emery H McCrory MD4; Matthew Antalek BS5; Paloma Toledo MD, MPH6


Social media platforms have become ubiquitous in society; 77% of Internet users use social media. Twitter is a popular social media platform with 313 million monthly users who send approximately 600 million tweets per day. Users can formulate messages called “tweets.” Tweets may have web-links, photos, videos, polls/questions, and other types of content embedded within them. Content of tweets can be organized by the “hashtags” used. With such a large number of active users and the ability to entice users to visit webpages embedded within tweets, Twitter offers a unique platform to interact with followers and has become a tool for information dissemination including in the medical profession. The objective of this study was to evaluate twitter usage of the American Society of Anesthesiologists (ASA).


All tweets from the ASA (“@ASALifeline”) were collected over a one-year time period (May 27, 2016 to May 27, 2017). For each tweet, the tweet ID, date the tweet was posted, the tweet’s full text, media urls embedded in the tweets, the link to the original tweet (if it was a retweet), the user who was retweeted, retweet count, favorite count, users who were mentioned in the tweet, and distinct hashtags used were obtained. Tweets directed at SOAP and obstetric anesthesia content was also evaluated. Descriptive statistics were used to summarize the data.


In a year period “@ASAlifeline” produced 3706 tweets. Of these tweets 61% tweets were retweeted. Median retweet per tweet was 2 (IQR:1-4). The ASA tweets were favorited a median of 2 times per tweet (IQR 1-4). ASA twitter usage was greatest in the month of October (26% of tweets), the month of the ASA annual meeting, followed by July (15%), the month of the Safe VA Care Initiative and May (13%), the month of the ASA legislative conference. 1% of all tweets occurred the during SOAP 2017 annual meeting from May 10-14, 2017, of these only 7% were related to SOAP. The ASA tweeted at @SOAPHQ 11 times in one year. The most commonly used obstetric anesthesia hashtags used by the ASA were #SOAPAM2017, #obstetric, #SOAPnews, #labor, #obstetricanesthesia, and #maternalmortality.


Twitter is a powerful tool for dispersion of information to colleagues, patients and the general public. Given the vast audience and reach of social media outlets it is important to continue encouragement of twitter use and promotion within SOAP, and also promotion by our national our society.

SOAP 2018