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Conflict-of-Interest Disclosures Common at 2011 AAOS Meeting

TUESDAY, March 19 (HealthDay News) -- At the 2011 American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons (AAOS) annual meeting, voluntarily disclosed conflicts of interest were common, especially for featured symposia, according to a study published in the March 6 issue of The Journal of Bone & Joint Surgery.

Frederick A. Matsen III, M.D., from the University of Washington Medical Center in Seattle, and colleagues analyzed the voluntarily disclosed conflicts of interest listed in the Final Program of the 2011 AAOS meeting.

Participants for each of the program committees and more than 75 percent of presentations disclosed conflicts of interest. The researchers found that conflicts of interest were disclosed for all of the featured symposia, and for the majority of scientific exhibits (80 percent), podium presentations (76 percent), and posters (75 percent). Disclosures included paid consultancy (53 percent), research support for the principal investigator (51 percent), paid presentations (41 percent), royalties (39 percent), and stock (39 percent). There was a significant correlation between the number of disclosures per author and the number of presentations per author; the highest number of disclosures for one author was 37. There were 379 different companies associated with disclosures, however 26 companies accounted for 67 percent of the disclosures listed.

"In view of the previously documented frequency of undisclosed conflicts of interest, as well as the previously documented effects of conflicts of interest on research design, conduct, and conclusion, it may be time to consider improved strategies for ensuring the accuracy and completeness of disclosure and for managing the biasing effects of conflicts of interest," write the authors.

One or more of the authors or their institution had financial ties to an entity in the biomedical arena.

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