Quality Assessment of Randomized Clinical Trials in Periodontal Research from 2015- 2018 - A Cross Sectional Analysis

Authors: Abdullah Saleh Al Mutairi and Muzammil


Objectives: The objective of this study was to assess the quality of randomised clinical trials (RCT) published in the field of periodontology in compliance with CONSORT guidelines and also to identify any associated influencing factors. Methods: Quality of reporting in accordance with the 2010 CONSORT checklist was assessed and scored for RCTs published between 2015-2018 in three major periodontal journals: Journal of Periodontology (JP), Journal of Periodontal Research (JPR) and Journal of Clinical Periodontology (JCP). Descriptive statistics and linear regression with univariate analysis were carried out to identify the variables associated with mean CONSORT score. Mean scores were compared between various variables. Results: 177 RCTs were identified from1875 published scientific articles accounting for 9.4% of the total publications screened. Europe (54%) produced more than half of the RCTs followed by Asia (19.2%). A large number of RCTs failed to report satisfactorily many items from the CONSORT checklist with no significant difference between three journals. The mean CONSORT score for JCP was the highest, at 70.5% (95% CI: 68.8 to 72.1), followed by JOP, at 69.9% (95% CI: 68.1 to 71.7) and 68.8% (95% CI: 65.6 to 71.9) for the JPR at p=0.631. Though, the mean CONSORT score increased from 70.4% in 2015 to 71.0% in 2018 but differences were not significant at p=0.653. RCTs reported by more than six authors had better CONSORT score compared to RCTs reported by fewer than six authors at p=0.01. Conclusions: Inadequate reporting of several items of the CONSORT statement in published periodontal RCTs highlights the shared responsibility of researchers, journal reviewers and editors in maintaining the quality of reporting of RCTs.

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