Ethical considerations in anaesthesia journals

T Asai, K Shingu
Anaesthesia 1999, 54 (2): 192-7
It has been shown that instructions to authors in nonanaesthesia biomedical journals often fail to require authors to state that the study was approved by an ethics committee and informed consent obtained from participants; articles also often omit mentioning these points. We examined 11 English-language journals, which are listed in the 'Anesthesiology' category of 1995 SCI Journal Citation Reports, to see whether the instructions to authors of anaesthesia journals mention the following ethical factors: approval of the study by an ethics committee, informed consent, redundant publication, fraud, authorship, conflict of interest and protection of patients' privacy. We also examined 673 articles which appeared in these anaesthesia journals ( July to December issues of 1996) to see whether they stated acquirement of ethics committee approval and informed consent. All journals addressed the avoidance of redundant publications and unjustifiable authorship. Ten journals required approval of studies and signatures from all authors, eight journals mentioned informed consent. Only seven required the disclosure of any conflict of interest and the protection of patients' privacy. More than 90% of the articles stated that the study was approved and informed consent obtained.

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