Purpose Eating disorders (EDs) are mental illnesses with severe consequences and high mortality rates. Notwithstanding, EDs are considered a niche specialty making it often difficult for researchers to publish in high-impact journals. Subsequently, research on EDs receives less funding than other fields of psychiatry potentially slowing treatment progress. This study aimed to compare research vitality between EDs and schizophrenia focusing on: number and type of publications; top-cited articles; geographical distribution of top-ten publishing countries; journal distribution of scientific production as measured by bibliometric analysis; funded research and collaborations. Methods We used the Scopus database, then we adopted the Bibliometrix R-package software with the web interface app Biblioshiny. We included in the analyses 1,916 papers on EDs and 6491 on schizophrenia. Results The ED field published three times less than schizophrenia in top-ranking journals - with letters and notes particularly lacking-notwithstanding a comparable number of papers published per author. Only 50% of top-cited articles focused on EDs and a smaller pool of journals available for ED research (i.e., Zones 1 and 2 according to Bradford's law) emerged; journals publishing on EDs showed an overall lower rank compared to the schizophrenia field. Schizophrenia research was more geographically distributed and more funded; in contrast, a comparable collaboration index was found between the fields. Conclusion These data show that research on EDs is currently marginalized and top-rank journals are seldom achievable by researchers in EDs. Such difficulties in research dissemination entail potentially serious repercussions on clinical advancements.

Research in eating disorders: the misunderstanding of supposing serious mental illnesses as a niche specialty

Marzola, Enrica;Panero, Matteo;Longo, Paola;Martini, Matteo;Abbate-Daga, Giovanni
2022-01-01

Abstract

Purpose Eating disorders (EDs) are mental illnesses with severe consequences and high mortality rates. Notwithstanding, EDs are considered a niche specialty making it often difficult for researchers to publish in high-impact journals. Subsequently, research on EDs receives less funding than other fields of psychiatry potentially slowing treatment progress. This study aimed to compare research vitality between EDs and schizophrenia focusing on: number and type of publications; top-cited articles; geographical distribution of top-ten publishing countries; journal distribution of scientific production as measured by bibliometric analysis; funded research and collaborations. Methods We used the Scopus database, then we adopted the Bibliometrix R-package software with the web interface app Biblioshiny. We included in the analyses 1,916 papers on EDs and 6491 on schizophrenia. Results The ED field published three times less than schizophrenia in top-ranking journals - with letters and notes particularly lacking-notwithstanding a comparable number of papers published per author. Only 50% of top-cited articles focused on EDs and a smaller pool of journals available for ED research (i.e., Zones 1 and 2 according to Bradford's law) emerged; journals publishing on EDs showed an overall lower rank compared to the schizophrenia field. Schizophrenia research was more geographically distributed and more funded; in contrast, a comparable collaboration index was found between the fields. Conclusion These data show that research on EDs is currently marginalized and top-rank journals are seldom achievable by researchers in EDs. Such difficulties in research dissemination entail potentially serious repercussions on clinical advancements.
2022
1
12
Anorexia nervosa; Bibliometry; Binge eating disorder; Bradford’s law; Bulimia nervosa; Schizophrenia
Marzola, Enrica; Panero, Matteo; Longo, Paola; Martini, Matteo; Fernàndez-Aranda, Fernando; Kaye, Walter H; Abbate-Daga, Giovanni
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/2318/1877408
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