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Data collection, quality, and reporting

Section edited by Livia Puljak

This section considers manuscripts that assess quality aspects of data collected in all types of medical research studies, including systematic reviews and meta-analyses, along with how the data are reported in published form.

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  1. Content type: Research article

    Participation in epidemiological studies has strongly declined in recent years. We examined the reasons for (non)participation in population-based health studies among participants and nonparticipants of a pro...

    Authors: Manas K. Akmatov, Leonhard Jentsch, Peggy Riese, Marcus May, Malik W. Ahmed, Damaris Werner, Anja Rösel, Jana Prokein, Inga Bernemann, Norman Klopp, Blair Prochnow, Thomas Illig, Christoph Schindler, Carlos A. Guzman and Frank Pessler

    Citation: BMC Medical Research Methodology 2017 17:18

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  2. Content type: Research article

    In conducting population-based surveys, it is important to thoroughly examine and adjust for potential non-response bias to improve the representativeness of the sample prior to conducting analyses of the data...

    Authors: Nida H. Corry, Christianna S. Williams, Mike Battaglia, Hope Seib McMaster and Valerie A. Stander

    Citation: BMC Medical Research Methodology 2017 17:16

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  3. Content type: Research article

    Data on health-related quality of life (HRQoL) is paramount for shared and evidence based decision-making. Since an overview of cervical cancer HRQoL tools and their validity appears to be lacking, we performe...

    Authors: Casper Tax, Marlie E. Steenbergen, Petra L. M. Zusterzeel, Ruud L. M. Bekkers and Maroeska M. Rovers

    Citation: BMC Medical Research Methodology 2017 17:15

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  4. Content type: Research article

    Formative programme evaluations assess intervention implementation processes, and are seen widely as a way of unlocking the ‘black box’ of any programme in order to explore and understand why a programme funct...

    Authors: Willem Odendaal, Salla Atkins and Simon Lewin

    Citation: BMC Medical Research Methodology 2016 16:173

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  5. Content type: Research article

    Joint models for longitudinal and time-to-event data are commonly used to simultaneously analyse correlated data in single study cases. Synthesis of evidence from multiple studies using meta-analysis is a natu...

    Authors: Maria Sudell, Ruwanthi Kolamunnage-Dona and Catrin Tudur-Smith

    Citation: BMC Medical Research Methodology 2016 16:168

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    The Correction to this article has been published in BMC Medical Research Methodology 2018 18:33

  6. Content type: Research article

    Research reporting results of clinical trials, psychosocial or technological interventions frequently omit critical details needed to inform implementation in practice. The aim of this article is to develop an...

    Authors: Amy Streater, Aimee Spector, Elisa Aguirre, Jacki Stansfeld and Martin Orrell

    Citation: BMC Medical Research Methodology 2016 16:167

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  7. Content type: Research article

    When conducting systematic reviews, it is essential to perform a comprehensive literature search to identify all published studies relevant to the specific research question. The Cochrane Collaborations Method...

    Authors: Thomas Aagaard, Hans Lund and Carsten Juhl

    Citation: BMC Medical Research Methodology 2016 16:161

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  8. Content type: Research article

    Data capture is one of the most expensive phases during the conduct of a clinical trial and the increasing use of electronic health records (EHR) offers significant savings to clinical research. To facilitate ...

    Authors: Philipp Bruland, Mark McGilchrist, Eric Zapletal, Dionisio Acosta, Johann Proeve, Scott Askin, Thomas Ganslandt, Justin Doods and Martin Dugas

    Citation: BMC Medical Research Methodology 2016 16:159

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  9. Content type: Research article

    Respondent-driven sampling (RDS) is an increasingly used peer chain-recruitment method to sample “hard-to-reach” populations for whom there are no reliable sampling frames. Implementation success of RDS varies...

    Authors: Nathan John Lachowsky, Justin Tyler Sorge, Henry Fisher Raymond, Zishan Cui, Paul Sereda, Ashleigh Rich, Eric A. Roth, Robert S. Hogg and David M. Moore

    Citation: BMC Medical Research Methodology 2016 16:157

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  10. Content type: Research article

    Plasma cell dyscrasias (PCD) are a spectrum of disorders resulting from the clonal expansion of plasma cells, ranging from the pre-malignant condition monoclonal gammopathy of undetermined significance (MGUS) ...

    Authors: Krystal Bergin, Elizabeth Moore, Zoe McQuilten, Erica Wood, Bradley Augustson, Hilary Blacklock, Joy Ho, Noemi Horvath, Tracy King, John McNeil, Peter Mollee, Hang Quach, Christopher M. Reid, Brian Rosengarten, Patricia Walker and Andrew Spencer

    Citation: BMC Medical Research Methodology 2016 16:151

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  11. Content type: Research article

    Sufficiently detailed abstracts of randomized controlled trials (RCTs) are important, because readers often base their assessment of a trial solely on information in the abstract. We aimed at comparing reporti...

    Authors: Jean Joel R. Bigna, Jean Jacques N. Noubiap, Serra Lem Asangbeh, Lewis N. Um, Paule Sandra D. Sime, Elvis Temfack and Mathurin Cyrille Tejiokem

    Citation: BMC Medical Research Methodology 2016 16:138

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  12. Content type: Research article

    Population-based registries are increasingly used to recruit patient samples for research, however, they have several limitations including low consent and participation rates, and potential selection bias. To...

    Authors: Jamie Bryant, Rob Sanson-Fisher, Elizabeth Fradgley, Breanne Hobden, Alison Zucca, Frans Henskens, Andrew Searles, Brad Webb and Christopher Oldmeadow

    Citation: BMC Medical Research Methodology 2016 16:134

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  13. Content type: Research article

    Reporting adherence to intervention delivery and uptake is a detailed way of describing what was actually delivered and received, in comparison to what was intended. Measuring and reporting adherence is not routi...

    Authors: Liz Graham, Judy Wright, Rebecca Walwyn, Amy M. Russell, Louise Bryant, Amanda Farrin and Allan House

    Citation: BMC Medical Research Methodology 2016 16:132

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  14. Content type: Research article

    The objective of this study was to evaluate a pilot program that allowed Chicago field center participants of the Coronary Artery Risk Development in Young Adults (CARDIA) study to submit follow-up information...

    Authors: Kiarri N. Kershaw, Kiang Liu, David C. Goff Jr., Donald M. Lloyd-Jones, Laura J. Rasmussen-Torvik, Jared P. Reis, Pamela J. Schreiner, Daniel B. Garside and Stephen Sidney

    Citation: BMC Medical Research Methodology 2016 16:125

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  15. Content type: Research article

    Mobile technology has opened opportunities within health care and research to allow for frequent monitoring of patients. This has given rise to detailed longitudinal information and new insights concerning beh...

    Authors: Iben Axén and Lennart Bodin

    Citation: BMC Medical Research Methodology 2016 16:119

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  16. Content type: Research article

    Rapid reviews are of increasing importance within health technology assessment due to time and resource constraints. There are many rapid review methods available although there is little guidance as to the mo...

    Authors: Eva Kaltenthaler, Katy Cooper, Abdullah Pandor, Marrissa Martyn-St. James, Robin Chatters and Ruth Wong

    Citation: BMC Medical Research Methodology 2016 16:108

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  17. Content type: Research article

    Intention-to-treat (ITT) analysis is commonly recommended for use, due to its benefits on external validity, in randomized, controlled trials (RCTs). No published reports describe how ITT analysis, as well as ...

    Authors: Robert D. Beckett, Kathryn C. Loeser, Kathryn R. Bowman and Trent G. Towne

    Citation: BMC Medical Research Methodology 2016 16:106

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  18. Content type: Research article

    One of the main challenges for drug evaluation in rare diseases is the often heterogeneous course of these diseases. Traditional outcome measures may not be applicable for all patients, when they are in differ...

    Authors: Charlotte M. W. Gaasterland, Marijke C. Jansen-van der Weide, Stephanie S. Weinreich and Johanna H. van der Lee

    Citation: BMC Medical Research Methodology 2016 16:99

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  19. Content type: Research article

    The Health Care Module of the European Health Interview Survey (EHIS) is aimed to obtain comparable information on the use of inpatient and ambulatory care in all EU member states. In this study we assessed th...

    Authors: J. Van der Heyden, R. Charafeddine, D. De Bacquer, J. Tafforeau and K. Van Herck

    Citation: BMC Medical Research Methodology 2016 16:98

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  20. Content type: Research article

    Many health researchers are clinicians. Dual-role experiences are common for clinician-researchers in research involving patient-participants, even if not their own patients. To extend the existing body of lit...

    Authors: E. Jean C. Hay-Smith, Melanie Brown, Lynley Anderson and Gareth J. Treharne

    Citation: BMC Medical Research Methodology 2016 16:95

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  21. Content type: Research article

    The importance of respecting patients’ preferences when making treatment decisions is increasingly recognized. Efficiently retrieving papers from the scientific literature reporting on the presence and nature ...

    Authors: Ralph van Hoorn, Wietske Kievit, Andrew Booth, Kati Mozygemba, Kristin Bakke Lysdahl, Pietro Refolo, Dario Sacchini, Ansgar Gerhardus, Gert Jan van der Wilt and Marcia Tummers

    Citation: BMC Medical Research Methodology 2016 16:88

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  22. Content type: Research article

    Previous evaluations have documented that studies evaluating the effectiveness of therapeutic interventions are not always reported, and that those with statistically significant results are published more rap...

    Authors: Daniël A. Korevaar, Nick van Es, Aeilko H. Zwinderman, Jérémie F. Cohen and Patrick M. M. Bossuyt

    Citation: BMC Medical Research Methodology 2016 16:68

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  23. Content type: Research article

    The volume and complexity of patient data – especially in personalised medicine – is steadily increasing, both regarding clinical data and genomic profiles: Typically more than 1,000 items (e.g., laboratory va...

    Authors: Martin Dugas, Alexandra Meidt, Philipp Neuhaus, Michael Storck and Julian Varghese

    Citation: BMC Medical Research Methodology 2016 16:65

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  24. Content type: Research article

    Fatigue is the most frequent symptom reported by patients with chronic illnesses. As a subjective experience, fatigue is commonly assessed with patient-reported outcome measures (PROMs). Currently, there are m...

    Authors: Åsa Nordin, Charles Taft, Åsa Lundgren-Nilsson and Anna Dencker

    Citation: BMC Medical Research Methodology 2016 16:62

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  25. Content type: Research article

    The aim of this study was to analyze whether Cochrane plain language summaries (PLSs) adhere to the Standards for the reporting of Plain Language Summaries in new Cochrane Intervention Reviews (PLEACS).

    Authors: Antonia Jelicic Kadic, Mahir Fidahic, Milan Vujcic, Frano Saric, Ivana Propadalo, Ivana Marelja, Svjetlana Dosenovic and Livia Puljak

    Citation: BMC Medical Research Methodology 2016 16:61

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  26. Content type: Research article

    Generic quality of life (QoL) instruments provide important measures of self-reported wellbeing that can be compared across healthy and clinical populations. The aim of this analysis is to validate the ten-ite...

    Authors: Ashley E. Muller, Svetlana Skurtveit and Thomas Clausen

    Citation: BMC Medical Research Methodology 2016 16:60

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  27. Content type: Research article

    Patients presenting to the healthcare system with rotator cuff pathology do not always receive high quality care. High quality care occurs when a patient receives care that is accessible, appropriate, acceptab...

    Authors: Breda H. Eubank, Nicholas G. Mohtadi, Mark R. Lafave, J. Preston Wiley, Aaron J. Bois, Richard S. Boorman and David M. Sheps

    Citation: BMC Medical Research Methodology 2016 16:56

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  28. Content type: Research article

    The implementation of multidisciplinary stroke rehabilitation interventions is challenging, even when the intervention is evidence-based. Very little is known about the implementation of complex interventions ...

    Authors: Julie A Luker, Louise E Craig, Leanne Bennett, Fiona Ellery, Peter Langhorne, Olivia Wu and Julie Bernhardt

    Citation: BMC Medical Research Methodology 2016 16:52

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  29. Content type: Research article

    Waist, hip, and neck circumference measurements are cost-effective, non-invasive, useful markers for body fat distribution and disease risk. For epidemiology and intervention studies, including body circumfere...

    Authors: Pamela Barrios, Jennifer Martin-Biggers, Virginia Quick and Carol Byrd-Bredbenner

    Citation: BMC Medical Research Methodology 2016 16:49

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  30. Content type: Research article

    Research has shown inconsistencies in results and difficulties in conceptualization of assessment of socioeconomic status (SES) among adolescents. The aim of this study was thus to test the validity of self-re...

    Authors: P. Svedberg, J. M. Nygren, C. Staland-Nyman and M. Nyholm

    Citation: BMC Medical Research Methodology 2016 16:48

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  31. Content type: Research article

    To be able to make valid inferences on stated preference data from a Discrete Choice Experiment (DCE) it is essential that researchers know if participants were actively involved, understood and interpreted th...

    Authors: Jorien Veldwijk, Domino Determann, Mattijs S. Lambooij, Janine A. van Til, Ida J. Korfage, Esther W. de Bekker-Grob and G. Ardine de Wit

    Citation: BMC Medical Research Methodology 2016 16:45

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  32. Content type: Research article

    Emerging communication technologies have had an impact on population-based telephone surveys worldwide. Our objective was to examine the potential biases of health estimates in South Australia, a state of Aust...

    Authors: Eleonora Dal Grande, Catherine R. Chittleborough, Stefano Campostrini and Anne W. Taylor

    Citation: BMC Medical Research Methodology 2016 16:44

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  33. Content type: Research article

    The use of comprehensive instruments for guideline appraisal is time-consuming and requires highly qualified personnel. Since practicing physicians are generally busy, the rapid-assessment Mini-Checklist (MiCh...

    Authors: Andrea Siebenhofer, Thomas Semlitsch, Thomas Herborn, Ulrich Siering, Ina Kopp and Johannes Hartig

    Citation: BMC Medical Research Methodology 2016 16:39

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  34. Content type: Research article

    There is an increasing number of meta-analyses including data from non-randomized studies for therapeutic evaluation. We aimed to systematically assess the methods used in meta-analyses including non-randomize...

    Authors: Timor Faber, Philippe Ravaud, Carolina Riveros, Elodie Perrodeau and Agnes Dechartres

    Citation: BMC Medical Research Methodology 2016 16:35

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  35. Content type: Research article

    Rates of youth violence are disproportionately high in many low- and middle-income countries [LMICs] but existing reviews of risk factors focus almost exclusively on high-income countries. Different search str...

    Authors: Yulia Shenderovich, Manuel Eisner, Christopher Mikton, Frances Gardner, Jianghong Liu and Joseph Murray

    Citation: BMC Medical Research Methodology 2016 16:32

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  36. Content type: Research article

    Clinician surveys provide critical information about many facets of health care, but are often challenging to implement. Our objective was to assess use by participants and non-participants of a prepaid gift c...

    Authors: Jane S. Chen, Brian L. Sprague, Carrie N. Klabunde, Anna N. A. Tosteson, Asaf Bitton, Tracy Onega, Charles D. MacLean, Kimberly Harris, Marilyn M. Schapira and Jennifer S. Haas

    Citation: BMC Medical Research Methodology 2016 16:25

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  37. Content type: Research article

    Blinding is a pivotal method to avoid bias in randomised clinical trials. In blinded drug trials, experimental and control interventions are often designed to be matched, i.e. to appear indistinguishable. It i...

    Authors: Segun Bello, Maoling Wei, Jørgen Hilden and Asbjørn Hróbjartsson

    Citation: BMC Medical Research Methodology 2016 16:18

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  38. Content type: Research article

    Scoping reviews are used to identify knowledge gaps, set research agendas, and identify implications for decision-making. The conduct and reporting of scoping reviews is inconsistent in the literature. We cond...

    Authors: Andrea C. Tricco, Erin Lillie, Wasifa Zarin, Kelly O’Brien, Heather Colquhoun, Monika Kastner, Danielle Levac, Carmen Ng, Jane Pearson Sharpe, Katherine Wilson, Meghan Kenny, Rachel Warren, Charlotte Wilson, Henry T. Stelfox and Sharon E. Straus

    Citation: BMC Medical Research Methodology 2016 16:15

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  39. Content type: Research article

    Verbal autopsy (VA), the process of interviewing a deceased’s family or caregiver about signs and symptoms leading up to death, employs tools that ask a series of closed questions and can include an open narra...

    Authors: C. King, C. Zamawe, M. Banda, N. Bar-Zeev, J. Beard, J. Bird, A. Costello, P. Kazembe, D. Osrin and E. Fottrell

    Citation: BMC Medical Research Methodology 2016 16:13

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  40. Content type: Research article

    Health care researchers working in the Arabian Gulf need information on how to optimize recruitment and retention of study participants in extremely culturally diverse settings. Implemented in Doha, Qatar in 2...

    Authors: Amal Khidir, Humna Asad, Huda Abdelrahim, Maha Elnashar, Amal Killawi, Maya Hammoud, Abdul Latif Al-Khal, Pascale Haddad and Michael D. Fetters

    Citation: BMC Medical Research Methodology 2016 16:10

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  41. Content type: Research article

    To describe approaches used in systematic reviews of diagnostic test accuracy studies for assessing variability in estimates of accuracy between studies and to provide guidance in this area.

    Authors: Christiana A. Naaktgeboren, Eleanor A. Ochodo, Wynanda A. Van Enst, Joris A. H. de Groot, Lotty Hooft, Mariska M. G. Leeflang, Patrick M. Bossuyt, Karel G. M. Moons and Johannes B. Reitsma

    Citation: BMC Medical Research Methodology 2016 16:6

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  42. Content type: Research article

    Evidence mapping is an emerging tool used to systematically identify, organize and summarize the quantity and focus of scientific evidence on a broad topic, but there are currently no methodological standards....

    Authors: Ding Ding Wang, Marissa Shams-White, Oliver John M. Bright, J. Scott Parrott and Mei Chung

    Citation: BMC Medical Research Methodology 2016 16:1

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  43. Content type: Research article

    Chalmers and Glasziou’s paper published in 2014 recommends research funding bodies should mandate that proposals for additional primary research are built on systematic reviews of existing evidence showing wha...

    Authors: Sheetal Bhurke, Andrew Cook, Anna Tallant, Amanda Young, Elaine Williams and James Raftery

    Citation: BMC Medical Research Methodology 2015 15:108

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  44. Content type: Research article

    Harvest plots are used to graphically display evidence from complex and diverse studies or results. Overviews of reviews bring together evidence from two or more systematic reviews. Our objective was to determ...

    Authors: Katelynn Crick, Aireen Wingert, Katrina Williams, Ricardo M. Fernandes, Denise Thomson and Lisa Hartling

    Citation: BMC Medical Research Methodology 2015 15:91

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  45. Content type: Research article

    Finding eligible studies for meta-analysis and systematic reviews relies on keyword-based searching as the gold standard, despite its inefficiency. Searching based on direct citations is not sufficiently compr...

    Authors: A. Cecile J W Janssens and M. Gwinn

    Citation: BMC Medical Research Methodology 2015 15:84

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    The Erratum to this article has been published in BMC Medical Research Methodology 2015 15:97

  46. Content type: Research article

    Record linkage of existing individual health care data is an efficient way to answer important epidemiological research questions. Reuse of individual health-related data faces several problems: Either a uniqu...

    Authors: Kurt Schmidlin, Kerri M. Clough-Gorr and Adrian Spoerri

    Citation: BMC Medical Research Methodology 2015 15:46

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  47. Content type: Research article

    Accurate blood pressure measurements are needed in clinical practice, intervention studies and health examination surveys. Blood pressure measurements are sensitive: their accuracy can be affected by measureme...

    Authors: Hanna Tolonen, Päivikki Koponen, Androniki Naska, Satu Männistö, Grazyna Broda, Tarja Palosaari and Kari Kuulasmaa

    Citation: BMC Medical Research Methodology 2015 15:33

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