When gathering information on the experiences of cancer patients, future clinicians and researchers may turn to blogs, social media and online forums. The internet offers cancer patients a rich source of news and information, as well as providing a platform for patients to share experiences, offer support and discuss their needs. The resulting patient-led discussions form a resource that may prove useful for healthcare professionals.
A study published this week inecancermedicalscience, the open access journal from the European Institute of Oncology, examines the online narratives of patients undergoing chemotherapy forcolorectal cancer.
As healthcare professionals grow more interested in social media, personalized medicine and patient empowerment, the web analysis methodology developed by Beusterien and colleagues may provide more valuable patient-centred insight into the real-world experience of cancer treatments.