Background and study aims: Many papers have been published in the field of diagnostic endoscopy in the last few years. However, there are no reports on their quality. The aim of this study was to evaluate quality in recently published endoscopic articles.
Materials and methods: The study reviewed published articles on diagnostic endoscopy from 1998 to 2008. Quality was assessed and independently quantified by two observers using the STARD (STandards for the Reporting of Diagnostic accuracy studies) and CONSORT (Consolidated Standards for Reporting of Trials) statements. The interobserver proportion of agreement and kappa coefficient were estimated.
Results: A total of 120 articles comprising 10 randomized controlled trials and 110 diagnostic accuracy studies were evaluated. Most studies related to colonic polyp detection (30 %) or evaluation of Barrett's esophagus (29 %). Chromoscopy (45 %), fluorescence (21 %), and narrow-band imaging (14 %) were the technologies most often evaluated. The mean number of items (i. e. standard requirements) fulfilled by the randomized controlled trials was 15.7 +/- 2.2 out of 22 while for the diagnostic accuracy studies it was 12.2 +/- 3.6 out of 25. Reporting of study results was complete in 90 % of the randomized controlled trials, but only 65 % of the diagnostic accuracy studies presented a cross-table of results. The global proportion of agreement between observers was 97 % in randomized controlled trials and 95 % in diagnostic accuracy studies.
Conclusions: Recent publications in diagnostic endoscopy achieve only medium quality according to the available statements. It seems that it would be useful for authors, reviewers, and editors to be familiar with and apply these statements. The development of a specific checklist for diagnostic endoscopy publications might be helpful toward achieving better quality reporting in the future.
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