10 Tips for How to Use Web 2.0 in Medicine

You know well how much I like to talk about the special relationship between web 2.0 and medicine. It’s true that Ves, Victor and Bob have already told you several times how important it is to know more about the tools of web 2.0 created for patients and physicians. But now I’d like to provide a hopefully useful list about how you can use these tools in medicine even if you’re a patient or a physician. Enjoy it!

1. Do you have a Second Life?

Second Life is a virtual world where you can establish your second life. If you’re a patient, then you should try it how it is like to lie in a CT scan or ask a virtual doctor about your problems at the Ann Myers Medical Center.


If you’re a physician, take part in constructing the future of medical education. Train medical students and nurses in the virtual medical center.

2. User-based sites

For patients: sites like Sugarstats.com or Traineo.com are created for users to make it easier to track one’s insulin intake or weight loss. These sites can give you the motivation and support to reach your goals regarding your health.

For physicians: check out Pimp Notes (an open-source notes project for medical students and doctors in training); OttoBib (make a bibliography easily) or Zoho (create presentations online).

3. Medical wikis

Web 2.0 based databases make it easier to track the changes of a medical specialty or you can even edit-write the articles yourself. If you’re a patient, use Wikipedia (start with Medicine Portal or Medicine Category).

If you’re a physician, browse among the great medical wikis created and maintained by physicians from around the world (you may start with Ask Dr Wiki).


4. Communities

Web 2.0 is based on communities and collaboration. If you’re a patient, find people dealing with the same health challenge at MDjunction.com. You can find online support groups, join health communities or just read about your medical problems described by others.

If you’re a physician, join one of the best medical communities at Tiromed.com. Ask a mentor or become a mentor. Upload your CV and find collaborators from around the world, or find a job via this community. Sermo.com is great as well.

5. Medical blogs

Medical blogs (web log or internet diary) provide content and express opinion on healthcare that you can never find in a medical paper. First, let’s surf among patients’ blogs:

And you should check out these medical blogs as well:

6. Blog Carnivals

If you don’t have time to run through all of these blogs and other sites, then blog carnivals are created for you! These carnivals collect the best posts on a subject from time to time.


7. Medical Search Engines:

Search engines (like Google, Yahoo) don’t select among sources, that’s why many of the medical search results can’t be relevant. But medical search engines use peer-reviewed sources and sites selected by experts providing the most relevant and reliable medical information of the best quality:

8. Medical Podcasts and Videocasts:

Reading blogs is even easier and more comfortable with podcasts and videocasts. A podcast is a portable audio file (a videocast is a video file) that you can listen to while working, doing exercises or just sitting in a traffic jam.

Medical podcasts:


You also have to know about web conferences. Read more about MedPresence at the Human Productivity Lab.

9. Medical content, content, content:

What I love the most in web 2.0? The free content! Let’s browse among the medical videos on VideoJug; the medical image collections of Flickr or find interesting cases at Clinicalcases.org.

10. Your Choice!

The 10th tip is your choice! We’re curious about how you use web 2.0 in medicine even if you’re a patient or a physician. So tell us!

You can read more about web 2.0 and medicine on Scienceroll.