Publication rate of abstracts presented at the Australian Orthopaedic Association Annual Scientific Meeting

Publication Name

ANZ Journal of Surgery


Background: Presentations at scientific conferences are an important method of research dissemination, with abstracts often used to inform clinical practice. Abstract to publication ratio is a commonly used tool for determining meeting quality. The aim of this study was to determine the publication rate for abstracts presented at the Australian Orthopaedic Association Annual Scientific Meeting (AOA ASM) between 2012 and 2015 inclusive and identify reasons for non-publication. Methods: MEDLINE, PubMed and Google Scholar were searched to determine whether each abstract presented at AOA ASMs between 2012 and 2015 was associated with a full text publication in a peer-reviewed journal. Where a publication could not be located, the presenter was contacted to confirm the reason for non-publication. Results: A total of 1130 abstracts were submitted (951 oral and 179 posters), and 573 resulted in full-text peer-reviewed publications (51%). The majority of publications (73%) were published within 2 years of presentation. There was no difference in likelihood of publication for oral presentations compared to posters, nor in the rate of publication across the 4 years of meetings. Common reasons for non-publication were lack of time (32%), publication considered low priority (27%) and journal rejections (22%). Conclusion: The overall publication rate for abstracts presented at the AOA ASM is 51%, which is an increase from the 1998 ASM (31%). This publication rate is higher than many similar Australian meetings and on par with other international orthopaedic and subspecialty meetings. Future research should investigate potential publication bias and methods to minimise barriers to publication.

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