June 4th, 2013

Day Two At the NLA: Interviewed On The Radio

June 2– The early part of my second day at the NLA conference started out in an exciting way. As a third place winner of the Young Investigators abstract competition I was invited to talk about my research on “Lipid Luminations,”XM radio’s Reach MD station hosted by Dr. Alan Brown.  My research, titled “Prevalence of unrecognized prediabetes, diabetes and metabolic syndrome in patients undergoing non-urgent PCI,” found that using A1c levels nearly 1 out of every 10 patients admitted had diabetes without a prior diagnosis. An even larger proportion had prediabetes (57%) and metabolic syndrome (54%).

I have presented posters at prior conferences but had never been on the radio. It was not quite a formal oral presentation, but also not as casual as a poster presentation. I spent several hours prior to the interview preparing for questions that might be asked. My nervous energy settled down and I found myself focused and at ease when I finally sat down at the microphone and started chatting about my research with Dr. Brown, who was very insightful and genuinely interested in the results.

I was told that the show was one of the most popular on the station. It made me realize the growing importance of multimedia in the field of medicine – from blogs, to twitter accounts, TV shows, and radio. In most cases, whether intentional or not, the main audience is the general public.

As fellows, we are sometimes discouraged from using social media to voice our medical opinions as we are employees of a hospital and thus are thought to be representing our employers, or for fear that it might result in the inappropriate release of private information.  With the growing use of multiple forms of media in medicine, we may find ourselves “behind the times” when we graduate into practice if we don’t know how to use it appropriately in the context of our work.

Has your fellowship program incorporated the use of social media in your training? If they have, in what manner? Are you encouraged or discouraged to participate? 


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