Original Research| Volume 51, ISSUE 1, P45-49, January 2012

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Publication Rates of Poster Presentations at the American College of Foot and Ankle Surgeons Annual Scientific Conference Between 1999 and 2008


      Publication is the desired end point of scientific research. Ultimately, it is desired that research presented in poster format at a scientific conference will be developed into a report and become published in a peer-reviewed scientific journal. Moreover, poster presentations of research studies are often referenced and, as a result, influence treatment care plans. No data exist for the actual publication rate of podiatric foot and ankle surgery poster presentations. Therefore, the objective of the present study was to determine the actual publication rates of poster presentations at the American College of Foot and Ankle Surgeons (ACFAS) annual scientific conference (ASC) during a 10-year period. Print or electronic media for the ACFAS ASC official program from 1999 to 2008 were obtained. Each year's official program was manually searched for any poster presentation and, when identified, the authors and title were individually searched using Internet-based search engines to determine whether a poster presentation had been followed by publication. Of the 825 posters, 198 (24%) poster presentations were ultimately published in 1 of 32 medical journals within a weighted mean of 17.6 months. Of the 32 journals, 25 (78.1%) represented peer-reviewed journals. The publication rate of poster presentations at the ACFAS ASC was less than that of oral manuscripts presented at the same meeting during the same period and was also less than the orthopedic subspecialty poster presentation publication rates. Therefore, attendees of the ACFAS ASC should be aware that only a few of the posters presented at the ACFAS ASC will be valid because they will not survive the rigors of publication 76% of the time. Additionally, more stringent selection criteria should be used so that the selected poster presentations can ultimately withstand the publication process.

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