Background: The purpose of this study was to determine characteristics and trends in published shoulder research over the last decade in a leading orthopaedic journal.
Methods: We examined all clinical shoulder articles published in The Journal of Bone & Joint Surgery from 2004 to 2014. The number of citations, authorship, academic degrees of the authors, country and institution of origin, topic, level of evidence, positive or nonpositive outcome, and inclusion of validated patient-reported outcome measures were assessed for each article.
Results: Shoulder articles that included an author with an advanced research degree (MD [Doctor of Medicine] with a PhD [Doctor of Philosophy] or other advanced degree) increased during the study period (p = 0.047). Level-I, II, and III studies were more likely to have an author with an advanced research degree, and Level-IV studies were more likely to have MDs only (p = 0.03). Overall, there was great variability of outcome measures, with at least thirty-nine different validated or nonvalidated outcome measures reported.
Conclusions: Over the last decade, there was an improvement in the level of evidence of shoulder articles published in The Journal of Bone & Joint Surgery that corresponds with recent emphasis on evidence-based medicine. A consensus is needed in shoulder research for more consistent application of validated patient-reported outcome measurement tools.
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)
Gartsman, Gary M.; Morris, Brent J.; Unger, R. Zackary; Laughlin, Mitzi S.; Elkousy, Hussein A.; and Edwards, T. Bradley, "Characteristics of Clinical Shoulder Research Over the Last Decade: A Review of Shoulder Articles in The Journal of Bone & Joint Surgery from 2004 to 2014" (2015). Orthopaedic Surgery and Sports Medicine Faculty Publications. 8.