Randy S. Hebert, MD, MPH; Cheri G. Smith, MLS; Scott M. Wright, MD
Grant Support: Dr. Wright is an Arnold P. Gold Foundation Assistant Professor of Medicine.
Requests for Single Reprints: Randy S. Hebert, MD, MPH, Division of General Internal Medicine, University of Pittsburgh, 933W, MUH, 200 Lothrop Street, Pittsburgh, PA 15213; e-mail, firstname.lastname@example.org.
Current Author Addresses: Dr. Hebert: Division of General Internal Medicine, University of Pittsburgh, 933W, MUH, 200 Lothrop Street, Pittsburgh, PA 15213.
Ms. Smith: Johns Hopkins Bayview Medical Center, Harrison Medical Library, 4940 Eastern Avenue, Baltimore, MD 21224.
Dr. Wright: Johns Hopkins Bayview Medical Center, A6W, 4940 Eastern Avenue, Baltimore, MD 21224.
Author Contributions: Conception and design: R.S. Hebert and S.M. Wright.
Analysis and interpretation of the data: R.S. Hebert and S.M. Wright.
Drafting of the article: R.S. Hebert, C.G. Smith, and S.M. Wright.
Critical revision of the article for important intellectual content: R.S. Hebert, C.G. Smith, and S.M. Wright.
Final approval of the article: R.S. Hebert, C.G. Smith, and S.M. Wright.
Provision of study materials or patients: R.S. Hebert.
Statistical expertise: R.S. Hebert.
Administrative, technical, or logistic support: R.S. Hebert, C.G. Smith, and S.M. Wright.
Collection and assembly of data: R.S. Hebert, C.G. Smith, and S.M. Wright.
High rates of authorship misrepresentation have been documented among medical trainees.
To assess misrepresentation among internal medicine residency applicants while comparing searches used by previous authors (searches 1 and 2) to a more comprehensive strategy (search 3).
Review of 497 residency applications.
Two university-based internal medicine residency programs.
Search 1 was limited to MEDLINE. Search 2 added Current Contents, Science Citation Index, and BIOSIS and included searching journals by hand. Search 3 added seven other databases and contacts to librarians, editors, and coauthors.
224 applicants reported 634 articles; 630 (99%) were verified. The number of applicants with misrepresented citations varied depending on the search used (56 applicants [25%] in search 1 vs. 34 applicants [15%] in search 2 vs. 4 applicants [1.8%] in search 3).
Using a comprehensive search, we found substantially less misrepresentation than had been reported. Previous studies probably overestimated the magnitude of the problem.
Hebert RS, Smith CG, Wright SM. Minimal Prevalence of Authorship Misrepresentation among Internal Medicine Residency Applicants: Do Previous Estimates of Misrepresentation Represent Insufficient Case Finding?. Ann Intern Med. 2003;138:390–392. doi: 10.7326/0003-4819-138-5-200303040-00008
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Published: Ann Intern Med. 2003;138(5):390-392.
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