Randomized controlled trials in endourology: A quality assessment - Abstract

Objectives: To analyze the quality of studies reporting randomized clinical trials (RCTs) in the field of endourology.

Materials and Methods: RCTs published in the Journal of Endourology from 1993 until 2011 were identified. The Jadad scale, van Tulder scale, and Cochrane Collaboration Risk of Bias Tool (CCRBT) were used to assess the quality of the studies. The review period was divided into early (1993-1999), mid (2000-2005), and late (2006-2011) terms. Studies were categorized by country of origin, subject matter, single- versus multi-center setting, Institutional Review Board (IRB) approval and funding support, and blinding versus non-blinding.

Results: In total, 3,339 articles had been published during the defined review period, of which 165 articles were reporting a RCT. There was a significant increase in the number of RCTs published over time, with 18 (2.81%), 43 (4.88%), and 104 (5.72%) studies identified in the early, mid, and late term, respectively (p=0.009). Nevertheless, there was no difference in terms of quality of reporting, as assessed with the Jadad scale, van Tulder scale, or CCRBT, between the three study terms. On the other hand, significant differences were found in both the number of high qualitative RCTs that used blinding methodology and those that had IRB review, when comparing the early, mid, and late terms.

Conclusion: There has been a growing number of Journal of Endourology publications reporting on RTC over the last two decades. However, the quality of reporting for these studies remains suboptimal. Researchers should focus on a more appropriate description of key features of any given RCT, such as randomization and allocation methods, as well as disclosure of IRB review and financial support.

Written by:
Jo JK, Autorino R, Chung JH, Kim KS, Lee JW, Baek EJ, Lee SW.   Are you the author?
Hanyang University Hospital, Department of Urology, Seoul, Korea, Republic of.

Reference: J Endourol. 2013 Jun 14. Epub ahead of print.
doi: 10.1089/end.2013.0036


PubMed Abstract
PMID: 23767666

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