Cross sectional study of Twitter (X) use among academic anesthesiology departments in the United States

Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Date



PloS one








Twitter (recently renamed X) is used by academic anesthesiology departments as a social media platform for various purposes. We hypothesized that Twitter (X) use would be prevalent among academic anesthesiology departments and that the number of tweets would vary by region, physician faculty size, and National Institutes of Health (NIH) research funding rank. We performed a descriptive study of Twitter (X) use by academic anesthesiology departments (i.e. those with a residency program) in 2022. Original tweets were collected using a Twitter (X) analytics tool. Summary statistics were reported for tweet number and content. The median number of tweets was compared after stratifying by region, physician faculty size, and NIH funding rank. Among 166 academic anesthesiology departments, there were 73 (44.0%) that had a Twitter (X) account in 2022. There were 3,578 original tweets during the study period and the median number of tweets per department was 21 (25th-75th = 0, 75) with most tweets (55.8%) announcing general departmental news and a smaller number highlighting social events (12.5%), research (11.1%), recruiting (7.1%), DEI activities (5.2%), and trainee experiences (4.1%). There was no significant difference in the median number of tweets by region (P = 0.81). The median number of tweets differed significantly by physician faculty size (P<0.001) with larger departments tweeting more and also by NIH funding rank (P = 0.005) with highly funded departments tweeting more. In 2022, we found that less than half of academic anesthesiology departments had a Twitter (X) account, and the median number of annual tweets per account was relatively low. Overall, Twitter (X) use was less common than anticipated among academic anesthesiology departments and most tweets focused on promotion of departmental activities or individual faculty. There may be opportunities for more widespread and effective use of Twitter (X) by academic anesthesiology departments including education about anesthesiology as a specialty.


Anesthesiology and Critical Care Medicine