Quantification of Urology Related Twitter Traffic Activity through a Standardized List of Social Media Communication Descriptors

Hendrik Borgmann, Matthew S. Katz, James Catto, Christopher Weight, Alexander Kutikov

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


Introduction The social media microblogging service Twitter is gaining popularity in the field of urology as a fast and effective communication platform. We assessed volume, subject matter, influencers and content of urology related discussions on the Twitter platform using the recently proposed Urology Tag Ontology hashtag list. Methods We queried the Symplur Signals database for tweet activity during a 1-year period. We used the Urology Tag Ontology hashtag list, comprised of 45 disease related hashtags in 9 urological subspecialties, to assess activity (numbers of tweets, users and impressions), users (geolocation, influencers) and content (words, tweet enhancements) of urology related Twitter traffic. Results Twitter activity during the study period included 334,642 tweets by 104,166 users with 1,397,107,305 impressions. Tweet activity varied among urological subspecialties and was largely dominated by urological oncology topics driven by #ProstateCancer. Users came from 224 countries and from all continents around the globe. Health care organizations accounted for the largest proportion of influencers (44%), followed by other individuals (22%) and physicians (13%). The top words were “prevent” (used 20,955 times), “cancer” (19,610), “follow” (19,169), “men” (19,165) and “condom” (18,425). The median (range) number of shares was 2,200 (1,414-8,854) for the top 10 links, 2,123 (1,878-2,737) for the top 10 retweets and 207 (12-438) for the top 10 photos. Conclusions Twitter activity in the field of urology can be assessed using a standardized list of social media communication descriptors. The value of the Twitter communication platform is underscored by the large number of tweets and impressions in the urology space.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)349-354
Number of pages6
JournalUrology Practice
Issue number4
StatePublished - Jul 2017


  • blogging
  • health communication
  • social media
  • social support
  • urology


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