Use of data analysis methods in dental publications : is there evidence of a methodological change?
|Author:||Nieminen, Pentti1; Vähänikkilä, Hannu2|
1Medical Informatics and Data Analysis Research Group, University of Oulu, 90014 Oulu, Finland
2Infrastructure of Population Studies, Faculty of Medicine, University of Oulu, 90014 Oulu, Finland
|Online Access:||PDF Full Text (PDF, 1 MB)|
|Persistent link:|| http://urn.fi/urn:nbn:fi-fe2020041618879
Multidisciplinary Digital Publishing Institute,
|Publish Date:|| 2020-04-16
Objectives: To evaluate how data analysis methods in dental studies have changed in recent years.
Methods: A total of 400 articles published in 2010 and 2017 in five dental journals, Journal of Dental Research, Caries Research, Community Dentistry and Oral Epidemiology, Journal of Dentistry, and Acta Odontologica Scandinavica, were analyzed. The study characteristics and the reporting of data analysis techniques were systematically identified.
Results: The statistical intensity of the dental journals did not change from 2010 to 2017. Dental researchers did not adopt the data mining, machine learning, or Bayesian approaches advocated in the computer-oriented methodological literature. The determination of statistical significance was the most generally used method for conducting research in both 2010 and 2017. Observational study designs were more common in 2017. Insufficient and incomplete descriptions of statistical methods were still a serious problem.
Conclusion: The stabilization of statistical intensity in the literature suggests that papers applying highly computationally complex data analysis methods have not meaningfully contributed to dental research or clinical care. Greater rigor is required in reporting the methods in dental research articles, given the current pervasiveness of failure to describe the basic techniques used.
|Type of Publication:||
A1 Journal article – refereed
|Field of Science:||
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