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Health Educ Behav. 2019 Feb 15:1090198118824399. doi: 10.1177/1090198118824399. [Epub ahead of print]

Pinning to Cope: Using Pinterest for Chronic Pain Management.

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1 Virginia Commonwealth University, Richmond, VA, USA.


Chronic pain is an increasing public health concern, with an associated poor quality of life. Social media platforms play an increasing role in health communication issues, but visual platforms such as Pinterest are understudied. This study analyzed 502 Pinterest posts for chronic pain-related variables, including health belief model constructs, as well as measures of social support and coping mechanisms. Most pins mentioned the high severity of chronic pain, and a third mentioned self-efficacy related to self-care, while almost 50% referred to cues to action related to self-care. This study positions Pinterest as a social media platform with the potential to both transfer knowledge and provide social support for patients with chronic pain. Health care and public health practitioners should consider participating in these conversations as well as providing quality information to ensure that reputably sourced information is available.


Pinterest; chronic pain; health belief model


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