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A pilot study of neurointerventional research level of evidence and collaboration


Introduction No studies have sought to provide a quantitative or qualitative critique of research in the field of neurointerventional surgery.

Objective To analyze recent publications from the Journal of Neurointerventional Surgery (JNIS) to test a new method for assessing research and collaboration.

Methods We reviewed all JNIS Online First publications from 25 February 2015 to 24 February 2016. All publications—human or non-human research, systematic reviews, meta-analyses, or literature reviews—were included; editorials and commentaries were excluded. For each publication, study design, number of patients, authors, contributing centers, and study subject were recorded. Level of evidence was defined using a new scale.

Results A total of 206 articles met inclusion criteria. Only 4% were prospective studies. Twenty-eight per cent of scientific research featured patient series of nine or less. The majority of publications were categorized as low-level evidence (91%). Forty-seven per cent involved individuals from a single center, with 87% having collaboration from three or fewer centers. International collaboration was present in 19%. While 256 institutions from 31 countries were represented, 66% were represented in only one publication.

Conclusions We queried JNIS Online First articles from a 1-year period in a pilot study to test a new method of analyzing research quality and collaboration. The methodology appears to adequately quantify the studies into evidence tiers that emulate previously published, widely accepted scales. This may be useful for future comparison of peer-reviewed journals or for studying the quality of research being performed in different disease processes or medical specialties.

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