Background The management of unruptured intracranial aneurysms (UIAs) has evolved significantly over the last few decades. Our objective was to evaluate the 100 most cited UIA articles by bibliometric analysis to identify nature, content and shifts over time.
Methods Elsevier’s Scopus database was interrogated for the 100 most cited articles that focused on UIA. Older versus newer articles were compared, with categorical data analyzed using Pearson’s Chi-square, and continuous data analyzed using Wilcoxon’s rank-sum test.
Results The 100 most cited articles were published between 1975 and 2015, with the majority of these reporting patient clinical outcomes (n=69). There were 47/69 (68%) articles that described surgical intervention, with 38/47 (81%) and 18/47 (38%) including endovascular and open approaches, respectively . Publications peaked in 2004 (n=8), and the most common country of correspondence was the United States (n=59). Compared to older articles, newer articles had statistically higher citation rates (P<0.01), higher number of authors (P<0.01) with more multiple institution collaborations (P=0.01), greater disclosures of funding (P<0.01), more focus on endovascular treatments (P=0.04), in more journals with a clinical, non-surgical focus (P<0.01) published under open access policies (P<0.01).
Conclusions In the 100 most cited articles about UIAs to date, there is a distinct shift towards more co-authored efforts utilizing multi-institutional efforts focused on endovascular approaches supported by funding. The emergence of endovascular techniques has refreshed the need for more contemporary rupture risk prediction models and natural history data to validate current attitudes towards clinical management after these minimally invasive procedures for UIAs.
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