When will I see you again? The fate of research findings from international wound care conferences

Jo C. Dumville, Emily S. Petherick, Nicky Cullum

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Medical conferences provide a forum for the rapid dissemination of research directly to health professionals and academics. However, the published record of poster and oral presentations from these meetings is usually limited to abstracts. We aimed to assess how many wound studies presented as conference abstracts were eventually published in journals and to identify the factors that predicted publication. The study was a retrospective review. We identified abstracts relating to oral and poster presentation from two large wound conferences. Following data extraction from the abstracts, a systematic search was conducted to examine if the research was subsequently published as a journal article. A time-to-event analysis was conducted to assess predictive associations between features of the research reported in the conference abstracts and time to full publication. In total, 492 abstracts from two European wound care conferences were identified (467 after exclusions). Of the abstracts included, 60% (279) were for posters and 40% (188) were for oral presentations. Over half of the abstracts (53%) reported results from case studies or case series design. In total, only 57 (12%) of the abstracts included resulted in a related publication. Analysis suggested that those studies reporting positive findings were significantly more likely to be published (hazard ratio 1.79, P = 0.001, 95% CIs 1.26-2.55). Few studies presented as conference abstracts at these two wounds conferences were subsequently published. This may be because of the low methodological quality of studies accepted for poster or oral presentation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)26-33
Number of pages8
JournalInternational wound journal
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2008


  • Abstracts
  • Conference
  • Publications
  • Wound care

Cite this