Should patients with diabetes be encouraged to integrate social media into their care plan?

Arun R. Nelakurthi, Angela M. Pinto, Curtiss B. Cook, Lynne Jones, Mary Boyle, Jieping Ye, Theodoros Lappas, Jingrui He

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

17 Scopus citations


Aim: To evaluate the use of social media of individuals with diabetes mellitus (DM). Materials & methods: Both web-based and in-clinic surveys were collected from individuals with DM. Descriptive and correlation analyses were employed to evaluate respondents' diabetes-specific social networking site behaviors. Results: Forty-five patients with DM completed the web-based survey and 167, the clinic-based survey, of whom only 40 visited diabetes-specific social networking sites. Analysis of online survey data indicated that self-reported adherence to lifestyle recommendations was significantly correlated (p < 0.01) with visiting the sites. Clinic-based survey data found that patients who reported using DM-specific web sites monitored home glucose values more often and had better compliance with insulin administration (both p < 0.05) compared with nonusers. Conclusion: This study provides insight into why individuals visit DM-specific social networking sites. Certain self-management behaviors may improve as a result of visiting these sites. Further work is needed to explore how to leverage social media technology to assist patients with the management of DM.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numberFSO323
JournalFuture Science OA
Issue number7
StatePublished - 2018


  • Diabetes Mellitus
  • Endocrinology
  • Obesity
  • Personalized Medicine
  • Social Media
  • Social Networking

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biotechnology


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