33-2 Podiatry and Medicine in the Age of Social Media


In This Issue:

  • FEATURE ARTICLE: The Role of Social Media in Podiatric Training, Practice and Patient Outcomes
    Miquel A. Rodriguez, DPM
    • Social Media Utilization Trends in Orthopaedic Surgery Residency Programs During the COVID-19 Pandemic
      Commentary by Blake Wallace, DPM
    • Social Media Use among Foot and Ankle Orthopaedic Surgeons
      Commentary by Neil Patel, DPM
    • Istagram and Pilon Fractures: An Analysis of Social Media and its Relationship to Patient Injury Perception
      Commentary by Miquel A. Rodriguez, DPM
    • How Health Communication via TikTok Makes a Difference: A Content Analysis of TikTok Accounts Run by Chinese Provincial Health Committees
      Commentary by Tzu Lu “Lily” Lin, DPM
    • Social Media and Healthcare, Part I: Literature Review of Social Media Use by Healthcare Providers
      Commentary by Kayli A. Hurst, DPM, MS
    • Social Media and Healthcare, Part II: Narrative Review of Social Media Use by Patients
      Commentary by Arwa Akram, DPM
    • TikTok as a Health Information Source: Assessment of the Quality of Information in Diabetes-Related Videos
      Commentary by Mark Alvarez, DPM
    • TikTok and Public Health: A Proposed Research Agenda
      Commentary by Faiza Zahid, DPM
    • Social Media and Well-Being: Pitfalls, Progress and Next Steps
      Commentary by Robert Middleton, DPM
    • Global Trends in Plastic Surgery on Social Media: Analysis of Two Million Posts
      Commentary by Bethany J. Badell, DPM
  • AUDIO LECTURE 1: Social Media’s Impact on How I Practice Podiatric Surgery
    Sarah Haller, DPM, FACFAS
  • AUDIO LECTURE 2: Building a Professional Social Media Presence for Your Practice
    Tea Nguyen, DPM



Since its very inception, social media has disrupted areas of life that we’d have never expected. In the younger days of the internet, most early adopters were unaware of what would evolve from a time-consuming habit into a necessary part of daily life. What began as a fad, social media quickly grew to invade many internet users’ social lives. However, it has simultaneously grown into an absolute necessity in the realm of business, and healthcare is not immune. For this issue, I have had the privilege of steering my colleagues’ gaze toward the powerful, turbulent and often daunting sea of unpredictability that is social media’s impact on the way we operate as podiatrists. Like ancient sailors without the guide of navigation, podiatric physicians must wade into these waters with care.

In this issue, I have gathered residents and alumni from some of the top programs in the nation: Ascension St. Vincent Hospital in Indianapolis, IN, Chino Valley Medical Center in Chino, CA and the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center in Pittsburgh, PA. These young podiatric physicians provide insight from peer- reviewed publications regarding the impact of social media upon healthcare, ranging from how social media use has impacted residency programs during the COVID-19 pandemic, to the weighty impact of these plat- forms upon healthcare communities in China.

In his Feature Article, Dr. Miguel Rodriguez (one of the top podiatrists in the Los Angeles area) provides insight into how podiatric physicians can leverage their social media presence to tip the scales toward positive results, both for their patients and for their own training and practice. This topic has been a favorite of mine over the years, as it continues to evolve as the platforms themselves do. What used to be a monopoly of internet users on “MySpace” is now ancient history, after less than fifteen years! I’m excited to see how the weight of current social media platforms affects healthcare, compared to earlier platforms and those ahead.

In her Audio Lecture, my good friend (and “celebrity bae”) Dr. Sarah Haller talks about the role that social media has played in her spectacular rise from student, to resident, to fellow and practitioner, and finally to reality TV star surgeon. Being based in Los Angeles, I’ve known a few podiatrists that have taken the plunge into the entertainment industry, but Dr. Haller has truly mastered the impossible task of balancing day-to-day patient care and surgeries with reality show filming.

In smartly investing her time into her own social media and podcast presence, our second Lecturer Dr. Tea Nguyen has built one of the top practices and coaching platforms for women in podiatry. She has never been shy about her opinions and commentary on her social media, and she provides us with a talk about how she built her “online empire” from the west coast.

Thank you for giving me the opportunity to bring together these important perspectives for you as the reader. Overall, social media will continue to evolve and so this issue will not be the final say. Someday in the not-too-distant future we may be discussing “Podiatry in the Metaverse,” and I’m all for it.

Wenjay Sung, DPM, FACFAS