↓ Skip to main content

Research waste in diagnostic trials: a methods review evaluating the reporting of test-treatment interventions

Overview of attention for article published in BMC Medical Research Methodology, February 2017
Altmetric Badge

About this Attention Score

  • In the top 5% of all research outputs scored by Altmetric
  • High Attention Score compared to outputs of the same age (93rd percentile)
  • High Attention Score compared to outputs of the same age and source (96th percentile)

Mentioned by

twitter
71 tweeters
facebook
1 Facebook page

Citations

dimensions_citation
18 Dimensions

Readers on

mendeley
47 Mendeley
You are seeing a free-to-access but limited selection of the activity Altmetric has collected about this research output. Click here to find out more.
Title
Research waste in diagnostic trials: a methods review evaluating the reporting of test-treatment interventions
Published in
BMC Medical Research Methodology, February 2017
DOI 10.1186/s12874-016-0286-0
Pubmed ID
Authors

Lavinia Ferrante di Ruffano, Jacqueline Dinnes, Sian Taylor-Phillips, Clare Davenport, Chris Hyde, Jonathan J. Deeks

Abstract

The most rigorous method for evaluating the effectiveness of diagnostic tests is through randomised trials that compare test-treatment interventions: complex interventions comprising episodes of testing, decision-making and treatment. The multi-staged nature of these interventions, combined with the need to relay diagnostic decision-making and treatment planning, has led researchers to hypothesise that test-treatment strategies may be very challenging to document. However, no reviews have yet examined the reporting quality of interventions used in test-treatment RCTs. In this study we evaluate the completeness of intervention descriptions in a systematically identified cohort of test-treatment RCTs. We ascertained all test-treatment RCTs published 2004-2007, indexed in CENTRAL. Included trials randomized patients to diagnostic tests and measured patient outcomes after treatment. Two raters examined the completeness of test-treatment intervention descriptions in four components: 1) the test, 2) diagnostic decision-making, 3) management decision-making, 4) treatments. One hundred and three trials compared 105 control with 119 experimental interventions, most commonly in cardiovascular medicine (35, 34%), obstetrics and gynecology (17%), gastroenterology (14%) or orthopedics (10%). A broad range of tests were evaluated, including imaging (50, 42%), biochemical assays (21%) and clinical assessment (12%). Only five (5%) trials detailed all four components of experimental and control interventions, none of which also provided a complete care pathway diagram. Experimental arms were missing descriptions of tests, diagnostic-decision making, management planning and treatments (36%, 51%, 55% and 79% of trials respectively); control arms were missing the same details in 61%, 66%, 67% and 84% of trials. Reporting of test-treatment interventions is very poor, inadequate for understanding the results of these trials, and for comparing or translating results into clinical practice. Reporting needs to improve, with greater emphasis on describing the decision-making components of care pathways in both pragmatic and explanatory trials. Please see the companion paper to this article: http://bmcmedresmethodol.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/s12874-016-0287-z .

Twitter Demographics

The data shown below were collected from the profiles of 71 tweeters who shared this research output. Click here to find out more about how the information was compiled.

Mendeley readers

The data shown below were compiled from readership statistics for 47 Mendeley readers of this research output. Click here to see the associated Mendeley record.

Geographical breakdown

Country Count As %
United Kingdom 1 2%
Unknown 46 98%

Demographic breakdown

Readers by professional status Count As %
Student > Ph. D. Student 9 19%
Student > Master 5 11%
Researcher 5 11%
Other 5 11%
Student > Doctoral Student 4 9%
Other 8 17%
Unknown 11 23%
Readers by discipline Count As %
Medicine and Dentistry 17 36%
Nursing and Health Professions 5 11%
Business, Management and Accounting 2 4%
Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology 1 2%
Agricultural and Biological Sciences 1 2%
Other 8 17%
Unknown 13 28%

Attention Score in Context

This research output has an Altmetric Attention Score of 40. This is our high-level measure of the quality and quantity of online attention that it has received. This Attention Score, as well as the ranking and number of research outputs shown below, was calculated when the research output was last mentioned on 13 June 2017.
All research outputs
#869,147
of 22,669,724 outputs
Outputs from BMC Medical Research Methodology
#91
of 2,000 outputs
Outputs of similar age
#20,029
of 310,847 outputs
Outputs of similar age from BMC Medical Research Methodology
#1
of 33 outputs
Altmetric has tracked 22,669,724 research outputs across all sources so far. Compared to these this one has done particularly well and is in the 96th percentile: it's in the top 5% of all research outputs ever tracked by Altmetric.
So far Altmetric has tracked 2,000 research outputs from this source. They typically receive a lot more attention than average, with a mean Attention Score of 10.2. This one has done particularly well, scoring higher than 95% of its peers.
Older research outputs will score higher simply because they've had more time to accumulate mentions. To account for age we can compare this Altmetric Attention Score to the 310,847 tracked outputs that were published within six weeks on either side of this one in any source. This one has done particularly well, scoring higher than 93% of its contemporaries.
We're also able to compare this research output to 33 others from the same source and published within six weeks on either side of this one. This one has done particularly well, scoring higher than 96% of its contemporaries.