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Table 3 Details on inconsistency for the study-validity-related factors between abstracts and full reports

From: A scoping review of comparisons between abstracts and full reports in primary biomedical research

Study-validity-related factor Number of included studies (reference numbers) Number of abstract-full-report pairs Main findings of inconsistent reporting
Research question or objective 3 ([2, 19, 20]) 274 Two studies reported high level (98% - 99%) of consistency for study objectives;
One study found 10% difference in both study objectives and conclusions
Population or sample size 11 ([7, 12, 19,20,21,22,23,24,25,26,27] 1121 Sample sizes in abstracts were found to be smaller (9%), be different from full reports (17% - 78%), or have insufficient information on numbers of enrolled and analyzed participants/subjects (44% - 59%).
Intervention or exposure 1 ([21]) 59 Full reports provided different/additional pathogens and/or interventions in two abstract-full-report pairs (3%).
Comparator 0 0
Outcome measure 8 ([2, 4, 7, 19, 22,23,24, 26]) 647 It was found that inconsistency existed in designating a different primary outcome (4% - 28%), outcome measures were different (59%) between abstracts and full reports, or primary outcome was not stated in abstract (70% - 77%).
Study duration 1 ([20]) 51 Sixteen abstracts (31%) reported different study period and/or population from full reports.
Study design 2 ([2, 19]) 223 High level of consistency was found for study design (95% - 99%).
Statistical analysis 1 ([2]) 159 Few abstracts (8%) reported the same statistical methods as in the full reports.
Result presentation 10 ([2, 3, 4, 12, 19,20,21, 24,25,26]) 1131 Results in abstract were different from full reports (13% - 41%), with a statistically significant change leading to a change of study conclusion (6% - 32%), not reporting pertinent negative (40%) and pertinent positive (90%) findings, or selectively reporting favorable results (6%).
Result interpretation 5 ([3, 4, 7, 12, 21]) 456 Result interpretation in abstracts was found to be inconsistent (4% - 15%), or overly optimistic (23%).
Conclusion or recommendation 9 ([3, 4, 12, 19, 21,22,23,24, 27]) 896 Conclusions in abstracts were reported to be inconsistent (15% - 35%), or with stronger statements than in full reports (17%).