Tackling acid-base disorders, one Twitter poll at a time.
Understanding and interpretation of acid-base disorders is an important clinical skill that is applicable to the majority of physicians. Although this topic is taught early in medical school, acid-base disturbances have been described as challenging by postgraduate trainees. We describe the use of Twitter, an online microblogging platform, to augment education in acid-base disturbances by using polls in which the user is shown laboratory values and then asked to select the most likely etiology of the disorder. The answer and a brief explanation are then shared in a subsequent tweet. Both polling questions and answers are shared from the account for the online, mobile-optimized, nephrology teaching tool NephSIM (https://www.nephsim.com/). An anonymous survey was administered to assess attitudes toward these polls. Using Twitter as an approach to enhance teaching of acid-base disturbances was both feasible and an engaging way to teach a challenging topic for trainees and physicians. Moreover, the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic has demonstrated the importance of incorporating virtual learning opportunities in all levels of medical education.
Rein, JL; Sparks, MA; Hilburg, R; Farouk, SS
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