Thumbnail Image

Publication trends among anesthesiology graduates and its relationship with future academic success

Walters, Corbin
Anderson, J. Michael
Ferrell, Sydney
Kee, Micah
Johnson, Austin L.
Vassar, Matt
Purpose: Research during medical training is widely considered to be an integral component of residency and fellowship match success, with many residency programs encouraging residents to engage in scholastic activities, such as serving as authors on peer-reviewed publications. However, the degree to which these scholarly practices continue beyond residency is unknown. Here, we investigate publication trends among graduates of anesthesiology residency programs as part of a larger initiative to examine publication trends and academic achievement across medical specialties.
Methods: We employed a cross-sectional study design analyzing research output by graduates of anesthesiology residencies in relation to future publications and academic accomplishments from a random sample of 50 anesthesiology residency rosters using Doximity. For each graduate, we extracted from Scopus the number publications, H-index score, fellowship attainment, and post-graduate practice setting.
Results: We identified 153 anesthesiology residency programs, of which 50 were randomly selected. Fifteen programs provided rosters, consisting of 390 graduates. The majority of graduates (197/390, 50.5%) had 1 or more publications, while 193 (49.5%) had zero publications, with an average of 2 publications per graduate and a median H-index score of 1.2. Most graduates pursued a fellowship (227/390, 58.2%), however, less than one-quarter (101/390, 25.9%) currently practice in an academic setting. Pearson correlation test demonstrated a positive correlation between the number of publications before residency and H-index (0.84), as well as during (0.33) and after residency (0.39). Graduates that had higher mean total publications were more likely to go into academic medicine (M = 3.8, SD 0.6) and pursue a fellowship after residency (M = 3.1, SD 0.4) than those that did not (M = 1.4, SD 0.3) (t390=-4.2, p <.001) and (M = 0.5, SD 0.1) (t390=-5.2, p <.001), respectively. Male graduates (M = 2.4, SD 0.4) had a higher mean publication total than female graduates (M = 1.3, SD 0.2) (t390=-2.0, p <.05).
Conclusion: Despite scholastic activity being a requirement of graduate medical education, few graduates of anesthesiology residency programs are publishing research. We believe that promoting greater physician involvement in the research process will strengthen confidence in the interpretation and application of research findings.