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The painful tweet: text, sentiment, and community structure analyses of tweets pertaining to pain.

Tighe PJ, Goldsmith RC, Gravenstein M, Bernard HR, Fillingim RB - J. Med. Internet Res. (2015)

Bottom Line: The Twitter-based social networks pertaining to pain exhibited greater sparsity and lower connectedness than did those social networks pertaining to common terms such as apple, Manchester United, and Obama.Taken together, our results suggest that pain-related tweets carry special characteristics reflecting unique content and their communication among tweeters.Further work will explore how geopolitical events and seasonal changes affect tweeters' perceptions of pain and how such perceptions may affect therapies for pain.

View Article: PubMed Central - HTML - PubMed

Affiliation: University of Florida College of Medicine, Department of Anesthesiology, Gainesville, FL, United States. ptighe@anest.ufl.edu.

ABSTRACT

Background: Despite the widespread popularity of social media, little is known about the extent or context of pain-related posts by users of those media.

Objective: The aim was to examine the type, context, and dissemination of pain-related tweets.

Methods: We used content analysis of pain-related tweets from 50 cities to unobtrusively explore the meanings and patterns of communications about pain. Content was examined by location and time of day, as well as within the context of online social networks.

Results: The most common terms published in conjunction with the term "pain" included feel (n=1504), don't (n=702), and love (n=649). The proportion of tweets with positive sentiment ranged from 13% in Manila to 56% in Los Angeles, CA, with a median of 29% across cities. Temporally, the proportion of tweets with positive sentiment ranged from 24% at 1600 to 38% at 2400, with a median of 32%. The Twitter-based social networks pertaining to pain exhibited greater sparsity and lower connectedness than did those social networks pertaining to common terms such as apple, Manchester United, and Obama. The number of word clusters in proportion to node count was greater for emotion terms such as tired (0.45), happy (0.43), and sad (0.4) when compared with objective terms such as apple (0.26), Manchester United (0.14), and Obama (0.25).

Conclusions: Taken together, our results suggest that pain-related tweets carry special characteristics reflecting unique content and their communication among tweeters. Further work will explore how geopolitical events and seasonal changes affect tweeters' perceptions of pain and how such perceptions may affect therapies for pain.

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Related in: MedlinePlus

Percentage of pain-related tweets with positive sentiment in selected North American cities. Larger diameter circles indicate higher proportions of positive sentiment in tweets containing the term “pain.”.
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figure3: Percentage of pain-related tweets with positive sentiment in selected North American cities. Larger diameter circles indicate higher proportions of positive sentiment in tweets containing the term “pain.”.

Mentions: Sentiment analysis was conducted on the entire pain tween corpus of 65,410 tweets. Sentiment scores of pain-related tweets were first compared among cities. The proportion of tweets with positive sentiment ranged from 13.13% (197/1500) in Manila, Philippines, to 55.73% (836/1500) in Los Angeles, California, with a median of 29% (Figure 3). There was a statistically significant difference in the proportion of pain-related tweets with positive sentiment among the 49 tested cities (P<.001).


The painful tweet: text, sentiment, and community structure analyses of tweets pertaining to pain.

Tighe PJ, Goldsmith RC, Gravenstein M, Bernard HR, Fillingim RB - J. Med. Internet Res. (2015)

Percentage of pain-related tweets with positive sentiment in selected North American cities. Larger diameter circles indicate higher proportions of positive sentiment in tweets containing the term “pain.”.
© Copyright Policy - open-access
Related In: Results  -  Collection

License 1 - License 2
Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC4400316&req=5

figure3: Percentage of pain-related tweets with positive sentiment in selected North American cities. Larger diameter circles indicate higher proportions of positive sentiment in tweets containing the term “pain.”.
Mentions: Sentiment analysis was conducted on the entire pain tween corpus of 65,410 tweets. Sentiment scores of pain-related tweets were first compared among cities. The proportion of tweets with positive sentiment ranged from 13.13% (197/1500) in Manila, Philippines, to 55.73% (836/1500) in Los Angeles, California, with a median of 29% (Figure 3). There was a statistically significant difference in the proportion of pain-related tweets with positive sentiment among the 49 tested cities (P<.001).

Bottom Line: The Twitter-based social networks pertaining to pain exhibited greater sparsity and lower connectedness than did those social networks pertaining to common terms such as apple, Manchester United, and Obama.Taken together, our results suggest that pain-related tweets carry special characteristics reflecting unique content and their communication among tweeters.Further work will explore how geopolitical events and seasonal changes affect tweeters' perceptions of pain and how such perceptions may affect therapies for pain.

View Article: PubMed Central - HTML - PubMed

Affiliation: University of Florida College of Medicine, Department of Anesthesiology, Gainesville, FL, United States. ptighe@anest.ufl.edu.

ABSTRACT

Background: Despite the widespread popularity of social media, little is known about the extent or context of pain-related posts by users of those media.

Objective: The aim was to examine the type, context, and dissemination of pain-related tweets.

Methods: We used content analysis of pain-related tweets from 50 cities to unobtrusively explore the meanings and patterns of communications about pain. Content was examined by location and time of day, as well as within the context of online social networks.

Results: The most common terms published in conjunction with the term "pain" included feel (n=1504), don't (n=702), and love (n=649). The proportion of tweets with positive sentiment ranged from 13% in Manila to 56% in Los Angeles, CA, with a median of 29% across cities. Temporally, the proportion of tweets with positive sentiment ranged from 24% at 1600 to 38% at 2400, with a median of 32%. The Twitter-based social networks pertaining to pain exhibited greater sparsity and lower connectedness than did those social networks pertaining to common terms such as apple, Manchester United, and Obama. The number of word clusters in proportion to node count was greater for emotion terms such as tired (0.45), happy (0.43), and sad (0.4) when compared with objective terms such as apple (0.26), Manchester United (0.14), and Obama (0.25).

Conclusions: Taken together, our results suggest that pain-related tweets carry special characteristics reflecting unique content and their communication among tweeters. Further work will explore how geopolitical events and seasonal changes affect tweeters' perceptions of pain and how such perceptions may affect therapies for pain.

Show MeSH
Related in: MedlinePlus