Content and Bibliometric Analysis of Articles Published in theJournal of Orthopaedic & Sports Physical Therapy

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Abstract

STUDY DESIGN:

Descriptive bibliometric analysis.

BACKGROUND:

Content and bibliometric studies are useful for describing the publication patterns of a given profession, such as physical therapy, within the medical and allied health fields. However, few studies have conducted these analyses on specialty physical therapy journals.

OBJECTIVES:

To conduct a content and bibliometric assessment of publications within the Journal of Orthopaedic & Sports Physical Therapy (JOSPT) and report publication and citation trends over multiple years.

METHODS:

All available JOSPT manuscripts published from 1980 through 2009 were reviewed. Only research reports, topical reviews, and case reports were included in the current analysis. Articles were coded by 2 independent reviewers based on type, participant characteristics, research design, purpose, clinical condition, and intervention. We obtained additional citation information (eg, authors and institutions) from a subset of articles published from 1992 through 2009 using bibliometric software.

RESULTS:

Of the 2233 available JOSPT publications, 1732 (77.6%) met criteria for inclusion. Of these, 1172 (67.7%) were research reports, 351 (20.3%) topical reviews, and 209 (12.1%) case reports. Over the last 30 years there has been a significant increase in the number of articles published and the percentage of research reports, systematic reviews, articles focused on prognosis, and articles including symptomatic participants. Percentage decreases were observed for topical or nonsystematic reviews and articles focused on anatomy/physiology. Top institutions, authors, and cited papers from 1992 through 2009 were identified in the bibliometric analyses.

CONCLUSION:

JOSPT has shown publication trends for increased percentage of experimental and clinically relevant research. However, there may be a need for increased publication of randomized controlled trials and studies focused on diagnosis, prognosis, and treatment, if goals of evidence-based practice are to be met.

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