Similar to the outcry over the ethics of website marketing by physicians in the 1990s, the resistance to plastic surgeons' use of social media has been loud and vehement. Many physicians, although receptive to website marketing, view social media as too radical or unprofessional. Despite the controversy, the value of social media as a communication tool for interacting with and educating patients is supported by studies showing that 65 percent of Americans and 90 percent of young adults use social media. Many plastic surgeons have been early adopters, as reflected by the articles written to help board-certified plastic surgeons use social media in academic medicine and for their practice. However, there is little guidance for young plastic surgeons who wish to use social media for professional purposes. In this study, the authors discuss the ethics and current literature on social media use by young plastic surgeons and make recommendations for how to use social media during training and after residency graduation.
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