- •The coverage of MS in the written press in Colombia over three decades is described.
- •The yearly rate of publications has increased notably over the last 10 years.
- •Most publications are of low to intermediate quality.
- •The most frequent topics of coverage are MS itself and DMT's, being rehabilitation the least common.
Awareness in the community is an important factor across a wide range of diseases and the communication media have an important role in its promotion. However, misinformation and misguide may take place heightening the expectations of people affected by chronic conditions such as multiple sclerosis (MS). This study explores media coverage of MS in a low prevalence country.
We identified the most important written media at national and local levels and performed a search in their digital archives and social media with the words "Multiple Sclerosis". The articles found were categorized as relevant, and non-relevant. We describe the total number, number of relevant and non-relevant articles published every year, since the earliest found until 2018. We identified the topics covered by the relevant articles and described their distribution and performed a quality evaluation of their content.
We reviewed the archives of 20 sources. A total of 976 articles where MS was mentioned were reviewed (relevant: 143 [14.6%]; non-relevant: 833 [85.4%]). We observed a steady increase in the annual publication rate, from the first in 1991 up to 107 in 2018. The most frequent covered topic was disease modifying therapies and MS itself, and the least documented topic was rehabilitation. Most of the relevant articles had low quality scores.
The media coverage of different topics MS has risen steadily since its first appearance in the early nineties. This should be encouraged, but caution should be held so misinformation is not propagated. We call for the public to discuss misleading information with their healthcare providers.
To read this article in full you will need to make a payment
Purchase one-time access:Academic & Personal: 24 hour online accessCorporate R&D Professionals: 24 hour online access
One-time access price info
- For academic or personal research use, select 'Academic and Personal'
- For corporate R&D use, select 'Corporate R&D Professionals'
Subscribe:Subscribe to Multiple Sclerosis and Related Disorders
Already a print subscriber? Claim online access
Already an online subscriber? Sign in
Register: Create an account
Institutional Access: Sign in to ScienceDirect
- An assessment of global Internet-based HIV/AIDS media coverage: implications for United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS’ Global Media HIV/AIDS Initiative.Int. J. STD AIDS. 2010; 21: 26-29https://doi.org/10.1258/ijsa.2009.009500
- Immunoablation and autologous haemopoietic stem-cell transplantation for aggressive multiple sclerosis: a multicentre single-group phase 2 trial.Lancet. 2016; https://doi.org/10.1016/S0140-6736(16)30169-6
- Media coverage of health stories often inaccurate, MDs report.Can. Med. Assoc. J. 1999; 161: 361
- Newspaper design as a fundamental element of the tabloid press. An analysis of the causes of the closure of Claro newspaper.Rev. Lat. Comun. Soc. 2015; 70: 859-877https://doi.org/10.4185/RLCS-2015-1075
- Estado actual de la esclerosis múltiple en Colombia.Acta Neurológica Colomb. 2015; 31: 385-390https://doi.org/10.22379/2422402256
- Ethics For Journalists.2nd ed. Tayloe & Francis, New York2008
- Social media and multiple sclerosis in the posttruth age.Interact. J. Med. Res. 2017; 6: e18https://doi.org/10.2196/ijmr.7879
- Changes in antidepressant use by young people and suicidal behavior after FDA warnings and media coverage: quasi-experimental study.BMJ. 2014; 348: 12https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.g3596
- Mortalidad por enfermedades huérfanas en Colombia, 2008-2013.Biomédica. 2018; 38: 198-208https://doi.org/10.7705/biomedica.v38i0.3876
- Promoting better quality media coverage of cancer.Nat. Clin. Pract. Oncol. 2007; 4: 613https://doi.org/10.1038/ncponc0977
- The QUEST for quality online health information: validation of a short quantitative tool 11 medical and health sciences 1117 public health and health services.BMC Med. Inform. Decis. Mak. 2018; 18: 1-15https://doi.org/10.1186/s12911-018-0668-9
- [Prevalence of multiple sclerosis in Colombia].Rev. Neurol. 2000; 31: 1101-1103
- The impact of media coverage on the transmission dynamics of human influenza.BMC Public Health. 2011; 11: S5-S19https://doi.org/10.1186/1471-2458-11-S1-S5
- HLA-DRB1∗14 is a protective allele for multiple sclerosis in an admixed colombian population.Neurol. Neuroimmunol. NeuroInflammation. 2016; 3https://doi.org/10.1212/NXI.0000000000000192
- Prevalence of multiple sclerosis in Bogotá, Colombia.Neuroepidemiology. 2007; https://doi.org/10.1159/000097854
Published online: June 12, 2020
Accepted: June 3, 2020
Received in revised form: May 30, 2020
Received: January 26, 2020
© 2020 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.