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 Table of Contents  
ORIGINAL ARTICLE
Year : 2014  |  Volume : 2  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 185-189

Three decades of anesthesiology research at King Fahd Hospital of the university: Bibliometric analysis of volume and visibility


Department of Anesthesiology, University of Dammam, Dammam, Saudi Arabia

Date of Web Publication11-Oct-2014

Correspondence Address:
Hany A Mowafi
PO Box 40081, Al-Khobar - 31952
Saudi Arabia
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DOI: 10.4103/1658-631X.142534

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  Abstract 

Context: The quantity and quality of publications by an institution is an indicator of its contribution towards the development of science.
Aims: To examine the volume and visibility of publications by the anesthesia department of King Fahd Hospital of the University (KFHU), Dammam, Saudi Arabia, in the last 30 years.
Settings and Design: Publications by members of the anesthesia department in the last three decades were retrieved from the databases of PubMed and Scopus.
Materials and Methods: For each article retrieved, the journal and time of publication, the type of the article and the authors were analyzed. The visibility of KFHU publications in leading anesthesia journals is related to the number of citations each article received. Since websites publish only citation reports for the years 1999 to 2011, we analyzed visibility for the years 1998 to 2008. The visibility was compared to the general Saudi anesthesia publications and those of some other Arab countries. It was also related to global indices.
Statistical Analysis Used: Two visibility indices were used in the present study. The first relates the average citations per articles in the years following publication to the average global citations per anesthesia articles. The second relates the average citations per article in the 3 years following publication to the impact of the journal of publication. The h-index was used as a measure of both volume and visibility.
Results: Anesthesiologists from KFHU published 151 documents in the years 1983-2013, with a marked increase in the last 6 years. The articles published from the year 1998-2008 received citations similar to the journals where it was published with visibility index of one. The average citations per article were 11.75 which are close to the global anesthesia citations per article (12.2).
Conclusions: KFHU anesthesia publications have increased recently. Its impact and visibility are similar to global indices.

  Abstract in Arabic 

ملخص البحث :

تعنى هذه الدراسة بقياس حجم وظهور الدراسات المنشورة من قسم التخدير لمستشفى الملك فهد الجامعي بالخبر خلال الثلاثين سنة الماضية. تم تحليل المتغيرات الخاصة بكل مقالة منشورة في المجلات الخاصة بالتخدير بما في ذلك الإشارة لتلك الدراسات المنشورة في الفترة ما بين 1998 و 2008م. كما تم مقارنة النتائج مع الدراسات السعودية والعربية والعالمية المنشورة في مجال التخدير. وضحت الدراسة أن أخصائيي التخدير في مستشفى الملك فهد الجامعي بالخبر قاموا بنشر 151 مقالا بين عامي 1983 و 2013م مع زيادة واضحة في السنوات الستة الأخيرة . وكان متوسط معدل الاستشهاد(Citation) لكل مقالة 11.75 وهي نسبة قريبة من المستويات العالمية.




Keywords: Bibliometric, h-index, impact factor, scientometrics, visibility indices


How to cite this article:
Al-Ghamdi AA, Mowafi HA. Three decades of anesthesiology research at King Fahd Hospital of the university: Bibliometric analysis of volume and visibility. Saudi J Med Med Sci 2014;2:185-9

How to cite this URL:
Al-Ghamdi AA, Mowafi HA. Three decades of anesthesiology research at King Fahd Hospital of the university: Bibliometric analysis of volume and visibility. Saudi J Med Med Sci [serial online] 2014 [cited 2019 May 25];2:185-9. Available from: http://www.sjmms.net/text.asp?2014/2/3/185/142534


  Introduction Top


The contribution of any institution towards the creation of a body of new scientific knowledge is measured by the volume and quality of the articles published by the institution. [1] It is usually a measure of the support given by the institution to academic research in terms of budget, awards and the creation of the appropriate academic atmosphere. [2],[3],[4] Other factors such as self-motivation, promotion or increased income may also play an important role.

The significance and visibility of published scientific articles are usually evaluated by the number of citations the articles receive in the years following publication. [5] By comparing this value to the global average citations per article or to the citations of the journal in which the article was published, the visibility indices can be derived. [6]

It has been 30 years since the first document was published by the Anesthesia Department of King Fahd Hospital of the University (KFHU). [7] This is the main teaching hospital of the University of Dammam, located in the Eastern Province of Saudi Arabia. The aim of this bibliometric analysis is to examine the volume and visibility of the publications by the anesthesia department of KFHU in the last 30 years.


  Materials and methods Top


We performed a bibliometric analysis of the data available from PubMed and Scopus. PubMed database comprises over 21 million citations of biomedical literature from MEDLINE (the U.S. National Library of Medicine), life science journals and online books. Scopus, a product of Elsevier, launched in 1954, is an abstract and citation database containing both peer-reviewed research literature and quality web sources. It includes nearly 20,500 titles from more than 5000 international Publishers. In addition to 28 million records, with references back to 1996, it includes also 21 million records pre-1996 that go back as far as 1823. We used also the Centre for Science and Technology Studies (CWTS) of Leiden University, Netherlands, journal indicators "http://www.journalindicators.com/". CWTS Journal Indicators offers a number of bibliometric indicators on scientific journals. [8] These indicators are calculated from the Scopus database to evaluate critically the scientific journals, with quantifiable, statistical information based on citation data.

Quantitative analysis

A separate search was made by each of the two authors of this article in the databases of Scopus and PubMed. For PubMed we used the electronic version (www.ncbi.nih.gov.pubmed) and searched for the following combined Keywords: "Name of the physician working at KFHU, Anesthesia department" Author + "years of employment at KFHU" Date-publication + "King Fahd Hospital or King Faisal University or University of Dammam" affiliation. In the Scopus database we used "Author search" for the authors who worked at KFHU and we manually extracted from the results those publications during the years of employment and having affiliation as above.

Articles from both databases were merged, compared between the two researchers and double-checked by contacting available authors and were then analyzed according to the following:

  1. The number of articles published.
  2. Year of publication.
  3. Type of publication.
  4. Authors of the article.


Qualitative analysis

In our qualitative analysis we used citations as the principal indicator of visibility and we analyzed the following:

  1. Impact factor of the journals in which articles where published; these were obtained from the Web of Knowledge-Journal Citation Report (JCR) or from CTWS journal indicator. The JCR impact factor is calculated as the number of citations given in the present year to publications in the past 2 years divided by the total number of publications in the past 2 years. The CTWS impact is termed Raw Impact per Publication (RIP) and is calculated for 3 years instead of 2 years of cited publications.
  2. Visibility Index: This is the relation of each article's citations to the impact of the journal in which the articles were published. It is derived by dividing the real impact factor of the article by the expected impact factor (impact of the journal in which the article was published). The number of citations obtained by each article in the subsequent 3 years of publication divided by 3 defines the real impact factor (RIF) of that article. The sum of all articles' RIF is the Total RIF and the value of the Total RIF divided by the number of articles defines the Average RIF for the articles published by the KFHU anesthesiologists. The impact of the journal, in which the articles were published, for the 3 years following publication was obtained from CTWS website (http://www.journalindicators.com/indicators). By averaging the sum of the 3 years' impact of the journal, we have a value which can be called the expected impact factor (E IF) of the article. The sum of all articles' EIF is the Total EIF and the value of the Total EIF divided by the number of the articles defines the (Average EIF) for the articles published by KFHU anesthesiologists. Since CTWS website published only reports for the years 1999 to 2011, we performed the above qualitative analysis on the articles published from the year 1998 to 2008.
  3. Average citations per article: For the articles mentioned above the cumulative citations in the years following publication divided by the number of article gives the average citations.
  4. H-index: This is indicated by a line. The number of items above this line, which is "h" have at least "h" citations. For example, an h-index of 20 means there are 20 items that have 20 citations or more. It depends on both the number of articles and the number of times each article was cited.


The last two indices can be compared among different institutions, countries or even to average global citations for articles published in the specialty in the same time range.


  Results Top


In the period from 1983 to 2013, anesthesiologists from KFHU published 151 documents with an average of about 5 documents per year. As shown in [Figure 1] it increased in the last 6 years to reach a stable average of 9-10 articles per year. [Figure 2] shows the main authors who contributed in publications and the number of documents they shared in authorship. Most of the publications (83%) were original research articles [Figure 3].
Figure 1: Annual distribution of the number of publications from the Anesthesiology department of King Fahd Hospital of the University

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Figure 2: Main authors who contributed to publications from King Fahd Hospital of the University during the period 1983-2013 and the number of documents they shared in authorship

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Figure 3: Document type of the publications from King Fahd Hospital of the University during the period 1983-2013

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More than 50% of the articles (87 publications) were published in the ten top-ranked anesthesia journals. [Figure 4] shows the journals in which anesthesiologists of KFHU frequently publish their articles.
Figure 4: The number of documents published by the anesthesiologists from King Fahd Hospital of the University in anaesthesia journals. IF is the impact facor of the journal as derived from Journal Citation Report (JCR) and RIP is the raw impact per publication of the journal derived from Centre for Science and Technology Studies (CWTS) journal indicator

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Twenty documents were published by the KFHU anesthesia authors from the year 1998 to 2008 in the anesthesia journals ranked by CTWS as retrieved from the Scopus database. One document was not cited in the 3 years following publications. The remaining 19 documents received 118 citations in the 3 subsequent years to that of the respective publication, resulting in a Total RIF of 39.3. By dividing this value by the total number of documents (20) we have the average RIF (1.97) for the KFHU anesthesia publications in the leading Anesthesia journals between the years 1998 and 2008. On the other hand, the average EIF for the KFHU anesthesia publications, as derived from the RIP of the titles in which the articles were published, was 1.95. The visibility index of the KFHU anesthesia publications, as derived by dividing RIF/EIF is 1.0085.

[Table 1] shows the cumulative citations for KFHU anesthesia publications in the years 1998-2008. The average citation per article compares favorably to the total Saudi anesthesia publications in the same period. Similarly, it was found to be more than the leading Arab countries in anesthesia publications. By relating the Average citations per KFHU anesthesia articles in the years following publication (11.75) to the average global citations per anesthesia articles published in the leading anesthesia journals, (12.2) [9] we derived a measure of visibility of 0.96 which value was close to the visibility index calculated above. The h-index was found by Scopus to be 15. [Figure 5] shows the h-index graph generated by Scopus for the KFHU Anesthesia publications.
Figure 5: H-index graph generated by Scopus database for citations published by the anesthesia department at KFHU

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Table 1: Cumulative citations for KFHU and other anesthesia publications

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  Discussion Top


This bibliometric analysis showed that the volume of KFHU anesthesia publications increased in the last 6 years. It showed also that the impact of publications of the anesthesia department of KFHU is at international level and the values derived compare favorably with those of other anesthesia publications in Saudi Arabia and other Arab countries.

Scientometrics is the science of measuring and analyzing science or the study of the quantitative aspects of science as a discipline. [10],[11] In practice, scientometrics is often done using bibliometrics, a measure of (scientific) publications. [12] Any bibliometric search method can only show the quantitative part of the full picture. However, in this study we analyzed both volume and visibility of KFHU anesthesia publications.

The increased volume of publications of the anesthesia department in the last 6 years to reach a stable level, with an average of 9-10 articles per year, may be due to separation of Dammam University from King Faisal University on August 2009. The later was associated with establishment of strong deanship of scientific research and increased number of budgeted research. More than 30% of the KFHU anesthesia articles were published in the Canadian Journal of Anesthesia and the journal, Anesthesia and Analgesia. This is probably because both journals publish the highest number of articles compared to other anesthesia journals. [13]

The introduction of the Science Citation Index (SCI) [14] allowed qualitative evaluation of published work. The value of previous work is determined by the number of authors who cite it. Thus, the number of citations can be seen as a direct measure of the resonance or impact that a publication has had on the scientific community. [15] The average citations per articles by an institution or a country can assess the visibility of these articles. Although this is highly correlated with length of time since publication, [5] it can be used over a fixed period of time to compare different countries and institutions. Also, relating it to the global average citation per article over the same period of time provides us with a measure of visibility. To adjust for the effect of time since publication and to obtain a more universally accepted visibility index, a different hypothesis was used. Published articles in any journal are expected to have the same impact factor of that journal. In this study we used the CTWS impact, termed Raw Impact per Publication (RIP), rather than the well-known JCR- impact factor, because it is more inclusive of anesthesia journals and cover a wider time range. Thus, the expected impact factor of an article is the average of the RIP of the journal in the 3 years following publication. On the other hand, the real impact factor of an article is the actual times it is cited in the 3 years following publication divided by 3. By relating the real to expected impact factors, the visibility index is derived. It is interesting to note that visibility indices calculated in both ways were almost equal; therefore proving the validity of both methods. Both also were close to one indicating that anesthesia publications of KFHU have visibility values similar to global indices.

It is interesting to note that the KFHU anesthesia publication from 1998-2008 in leading anesthesia journals constituted about 25% of all Saudi anesthesia publication in the same journals during the same period. This is not surprising since a previous study [9] has shown that university institutions constitute the main bulk of Saudi anesthesia publications. On the other hand, the high impact visibility of KFHU anesthesia publications compares favorably with those of Saudi and other Arab countries.

Several broad lines can be suggested to enhance research output from University of Dammam and King Fahd Hospital of the University. Budgeting is important for research. In addition to budgeting, every effort should be made to encourage research and to foster a sound research culture in the university. Research indices for promotion should evaluate both the volume and the impact of the journals in which articles were published. h-index, which depends on the volume and visibility of published articles, was found to be a sensitive indicator of academic activity among anesthesiologists. [16],[17] Moreover, there should be anesthesia research fellowship arrangement and thesis-based qualifications by the University of Dammam. The publication and indexing of the Saudi Journal of Medicine and Medical Sciences, the official journal of the University of Dammam, is a step in the right direction. Its inclusion in the Scopus and JCR will add to the impact of the journal and the articles it publishes.


  Conclusion Top


To conclude, the Average Publications of the Anesthesia Department at KFHU is 5 per year. It increased in the last 6 years to reach a stable average of about 9-10/year. Moreover, the impact and visibility of KFHU anesthesia publications are similar to global indices and compare favorably to those of other publications in Saudi Arabia and other Arab countries.

 
  References Top

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    Figures

  [Figure 1], [Figure 2], [Figure 3], [Figure 4], [Figure 5]
 
 
    Tables

  [Table 1]



 

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