Reading your Tweets

Using Twitter to investigate opinions about multiple sclerosis treatments: a descriptive, exploratory study.Ramagopalan S, Wasiak R, Cox AP.F1000Res. 2014 Sep 10;3:216. doi: 10.12688/f1000research.5263.1.

BACKGROUND:Multiple sclerosis (MS) is a common complex disorder, with new treatment options emerging each year. Social media is being increasingly used to investigate opinions about drugs, diseases and procedures. In this descriptive exploratory study, we sought to investigate opinions about currently available MS treatments.
METHODS:The Twitter resource Topsy was searched for tweets mentioning the following MS treatments: Aubagio, Avonex, Betaferon or Betaseron, Copaxone, Extavia, Gilenya, Lemtrada, Novantrone, Rebif, Tysabri and Tecfidera between 1 Jan 2006 to 31 Jul 2014. Tweets were normalised and sentiment analysis performed.
RESULTS:In total, there were 60037 unique tweets mentioning an MS treatment. About half of the tweets contained non-neutral sentiment. Mean sentiment scores were different for treatments ranging from -0.191to 0.282 when investigating all tweets. These differences in sentiment scores between treatments were statistically significant (P<0.001). Sentiment scores tended to be higher for oral MS treatments than injectable treatments.
CONCLUSIONS:Many tweets about MS treatments have a non-neutral sentiment. The analysis of social media appears to be a potential avenue for exploring patient opinion about MS treatments.
What do you say about MS drugs....for those using Twitter, it is possible to search your you can see what you are saying. I am sure this will interest Pharma as pat of their marketing plans. However there is a load of tosh that is tweeted....those nasty comments abount me and ProfG:-)