Article on Online Health Groups Highlights Effectiveness of Social Media for Specialized Health-related Peer Support

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Commenting on the recent article, Dr. Shirin Towfigh explains that social media platforms are an excellent peer-to-peer support medium, and even more effective when augmented with the advice of licensed medical professionals

Dr. Towfigh explains that it is the specialized nature of the Hernia Talk forum that accounts for its efficacy.

As users receive answers from actual hernia specialists nationwide, Hernia Talk is an even more effective platform for accurate information on symptoms, treatment options, and physician recommendations.

According to an article published March 1st on The Guardian, when it comes to seeking information and support for health concerns, online communities are playing a greater role than ever. The author of the article adds that, as noted in a study, a great majority of users also reported feeling more confident when speaking to medical professionals after taking advantage of online peer support. According to Los Angeles area hernia expert and surgeon Dr. Shirin Towfigh, proprietor of the online community, Hernia Talk (herniatalk.com), this article underlines the effectiveness, value, and sense of comfort that social media communities provide users in search of health information and support. The doctor explains that, while the input community members receive via Internet channels is by no means intended to take priority over the advice of one’s primary care physician, this information can not only offer a sense of comfort to those concerned about their symptoms, but it can help users understand when it may be an appropriate time to see their doctor. Additionally, Dr. Towfigh notes that online communities which are supported by physicians themselves are bound to be even more effective in providing users with accurate information regarding their symptoms and the treatment options available.

As the founder of a free online forum in which hernia sufferers are able to discuss their symptoms and receive input from a network of hernia surgeons and specialists, Dr. Towfigh explains that it is the specialized nature of the Hernia Talk forum that accounts for its efficacy. Due to the personal nature of hernias, the doctor notes that many people with abdominal pain or possible hernia symptoms may find it a somewhat sensitive topic to discuss with friends and family. Additionally, the doctor adds, the fact that hernias are often misdiagnosed, particularly in women, means that patients have every incentive to be proactive and seek out all relevant information in terms of outlook, diagnosis, and treatment options. What’s more, because it is not simply a peer-to-peer network, as users receive answers from actual hernia specialists nationwide, Hernia Talk is an even more effective platform for accurate information on symptoms, treatment options, and physician recommendations, Dr. Towfigh explains.

As a highly renowned surgeon and hernia specialist, Dr. Towfigh fully understands the symptoms and concerns that hernia sufferers face and she is a frequent contributor to the Hernia Talk forum. She notes that the intent of creating this Internet forum has been to help hernia patients understand the wide range of treatment and therapy options available to them. Interested readers are encouraged to visit http://www.herniatalk.com.

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Bob Westal
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