YouTube allows for public education on skin cancer topics

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According to researchers, YouTube could prove an important public conduit for skin cancer information dissemination. A research group based at the University of Colorado Cancer Center searched in YouTube, using search terms such as "skin cancer" and "skin conditions" and they found, among other results, 100 videos on the subject with some 47 million views (cumulative). The videos had been shared over one hundred thousand times and drove 6,325 subscriptions to specific YouTube content pages. A review of the online material found that approximately 25 percent of the videos were education in nature and another 25 percent fell into the "complementary therapy" category. Overall, approximately 35 percent of the video content has been posted by medical professional.

The study authors feel that rather than relying on traditional media, educators and medical professionals have an excellent tool in Youtube to disseminate factual information on skin cancer and skin care to the public. The researchers have studies planned for Instagram and Tumblr and they have already investigated Facebook and Twitter. They hope that academic institutions and similar facilities will see the promise in social media and increase the proportion of vetted material online for public consumption. 

Study results were published in the published in the Dermatology Online Journal.

YouTube allows for public education on skin cancer topics
YouTube allows for public education on skin cancer topics
YouTube is for more than watching World Cup highlights, Brian Williams refreshing old school rap classics, and videos of skateboarders landing in unfortunate positions on railings. A University of Colorado Cancer Center study published in the Dermatology Online Journal shows that YouTube also allows researchers, journals, and health advocates to connect directly with the public on topics of skin cancer and prevention.
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