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**A protocol for bibliometric and mapping analysis of Uveitis literature research published in recent time** Authors, and affiliation: Tingxiao Gao1; Hayley Monson2; Tina Felfeli3,4 1 Department of Medical Biophysics, University of Toronto, Ontario, Canada 2 Department of Mathematics and Statistics, McMaster University, Hamilton, Ontario, Canada 3 Department of Ophthalmology and Visual Sciences, University of Toronto, Ontario, Canada 4 Institute of Health Policy, Management and Evaluation, University of Toronto, Ontario, Canada Corresponding Author: Dr. Tina Felfeli, MD Department of Ophthalmology and Vision Sciences, University of Toronto 340 College Street, Suite 400 Toronto, ON M5T 3A9 E-mail: Fax: 416-978-4590 Running head: Uveitis Bibliometric Analysis Keywords: Ophthalmology, Uveitis, Bibliometric, Literature, Eye, Disease, Publications Conflict of Interest: None. Word Count: 1944 **ABSTRACT** Background: There has been a growing number of literature research on Uveitis published in major ophthalmology journals. Despite this, the publication patterns and growth trend of these studies have not been examined in detail. Purpose: The aim of this study is to examine the publication patterns and the relevance of scientific production on Uveitis from a bibliometric approach with computational tools. Design and analysis: This bibliometric study will be composed of three steps, formulation of search terms, literature retrieval, and literature analysis. A comprehensive search of the three medicine databases, MEDLINE, EMBASE and Cochrane will be searched against with the formulated search terms. All search results from the three databases will undergo analysis by R Bibliometrix, a computational program that analyzes large literature dataset with mathematical models. VOSviewer will be used for visualization of some of the connections between articles. Significance: This is the first study that statistically analyzes Uveitis literatures by utilizing articles across multiple popular databases and can give some hints for future direction and where ophthalmic research is headed. Ethics and Dissemination: No approval of research ethics is needed for this study for the reason that all analyses are conducted based on publicly available databases and no human subjects are tested. The final results of this study will be published in peer-reviewed journals and may be presented at scientific conferences. **INTRODUCTION** Uveitis is an inflammatory intraocular disease that contributes to 5-10% of the visual loss worldwide 1,2. The severity of the disease could be largely dependent on age, sex and race, geographic environments and social habits. Due to the prevalence of uveitis and its various phenotypic expressions, a significant number of high-quality studies about the clinical, epidemiological, medical aspect of the disease have been published. There has been a substantial increase in research interest in uveitis and consistently, a growing number of clinical trials and scientific literature published in recent years. More novel medications for treatments of uveitis have also been reported, such as intravitreal and suprachoroidal injection of triamcinolone for non-infectious uveitis3. A Bibliometric study involves the processing and statistical analysis on a large collection of scientific publications on a topic of interest. By analyzing the research, bibliometric studies allow scholars to quantitatively manage bibliographic data and gain a global vision of the chosen field. Although several bibliometric analyses have been conducted in the field of ophthalmology, the topic of uveitis has never been explored with such a method. **OBJECTIVES** The objective of this study is to provide an insight into the scholarly impact produced in the field of uveitis worldwide in the present day. Specifically, by examining the origin, status and citation counts of these publications, this study will investigate the quantity, source dynamics and collaboration patterns of uveitis research. This study may also be a bibliographic guide for scholars who are interested in reading about uveitis. The main outcomes of this study will give information on but not limited to general facts of the collection of references used, source dynamics and social structure of the publishing population. Specifically, in the context of this report, general information will include trends in keywords, annual scientific production, and average citations per year. Source dynamics will be studied by exploring the source impact and growth. Whilst the publishing population demographic will be investigated from two aspects, the author’s corresponding affiliation and country, and the collaboration networks of these contributing countries. **METHODS** Ethical approval was determined not necessary by the institutional review board of the University of Ontario. Guidelines reported in the Strengthening the Reporting of Observational Studies in Epidemiology (STROBE) will be followed by this study. Search Strategy A comprehensive search of the three most clinically relevant databases for uveitis studies, MEDLINE, Embase, and Cochrane was conducted from July 15th to August 4th. The search strategy was developed with the help of an experienced librarian (Appendix 1). The terms included in the search strategy consisted of subject headings from each of the databases for uveitis. No language restrictions were set on the search. **Main Outcomes** The main outcomes of this study will give information on but not limited to general facts of the collection of references used, source dynamics and social structure of the publishing population. Specifically, in the context of this report, general information will include trends in keywords, annual scientific production, and average citations per year. Source dynamics will be studied by exploring the source impact and growth. Whilst the publishing population demographic will be investigated from two aspects, the author’s corresponding affiliation and country, and the collaboration networks of these contributing countries. Data Retrieval Data collection will be conducted through two pipelines. Because the main R package being used in this study, Bibliometrix, only takes a limited variety of database format, the first pipeline involves retrieving search results from MEDLINE and Cochrane database. As the MEDLINE and Cochrane articles are fully indexed in Pubmed, they will be exported as Pubmed format which is recognized by and imported into Bibliometrix. The exported Pubmed results will include complete bibliographic details needed for the analysis. The second pipeline will involve downloading search results from the Embase database, as the Embase format is not recognized by Bibliometrix and is separate from all other databases Bibliometrix recognizes, a format transformation will be done with a self-written script. Duplicates in both pipelines will be removed with Excel software. Data Analysis and Software Utilized Before performing the series of analysis, all relevant bibliographic details of the resulting literatures from all three databases will be retrieved and congregated into one file. The whole dataset will then be imported into the R package Bibliometrix, the main tool this study will utilize for various bibliographic investigations. Source dynamics of the articles will be examined with multiple bibliometric indicators, which includes impact factor, annual percentage growth rate, Lotka’s Law, and Bradford’s Law. Lotka’s law uses a logarithmic scale to model author’s distribution based on publication frequency, and in this study, will be used to describe the scientific productivity of our articles. Bradford’s Law, also known as Bradford distribution, is commonly employed as an indicator for dispersion of scientific literature. In this study, Bradford’s law will be used to predict the few journals where the highest bibliographic production is concentrated in. The social structures of the publishing population will be explored through their countries of publication, author, and author’s affiliation. The countries’ scientific production will be compared with their rate of intra-country (SCP) and inter-country (MCP) collaboration indices. An illustration of the collaboration network between countries will also be provided using VOSviewer. Authors and corresponding author’s affiliations will be analyzed by summarizing the top contributing authors and institutions. Altogether, these informetric outcomes will provide guidance in developing a clear understanding of the scientific impacts in the literature field of uveitis. Implications of Study Findings This study will assess research conducted in the field of uveitis published between the year 1964 and 2022. With the bibliometric indicators used, this study will explore the research impact, productivity, and publishing author demographics worldwide. We expect to discover an exponential growth in uveitis literature research over the past three decades by examining the annual percentage growth rate. Moreover, we anticipate that the publication productivity will have an especially significant increase after the year 2000 from the inclusion of more randomized clinical trials and the advancement of imaging diagnostic technology. A drop in the growth rate in the year 2020 is expected due to the shift in focus of research and publications as well as the disruption in conduction of some studies due to the coronavirus disease 2019 pandemic. We also expect to find that countries that are known to have a higher economic support and productivity in ophthalmology research will account for a large portion of the literature. These countries may include the United States, China, United Kingdom, India, and Germany as previously reported. This trend is also expected to be observed for the individual research institutions. Although the research collaboration pattern is difficult to predict between countries, we still expect that countries with higher publication volume will also have a positively correlated higher collaboration index. **Limitations** Bibliometric study has become an essential tool for examining and summarizing scientific activities. Despite this, we would like to address some foreseeable limitations of this study. Firstly, although we have chosen three reputable sources to conduct this study, because the databases mostly cover research published in English, there may be publications in other languages that are not included. This may create possible bias toward certain English-speaking countries. Due to possible incomplete citations and missing information, some fields such as the country of the corresponding authors and citations per publication may not be available for all publications. **Acknowledgements** The authors would like to acknowledge the support of Elizabeth Uleryk in developing the search strategy for this study. **Contributorship Statement** Conception and Design: T Felfeli Acquisition of Data: T Gao, H Monson, T Felfeli Data Analysis: T Gao, H Monson Interpretation of Data: T Gao, H Monson, T Felfeli First draft of the Article: T Gao, H Monson, T Felfeli Critical Revision: T Gao, H Monson, T Felfeli Final Approval of the Version to be Published: T Gao, H Monson, T Felfeli Act as Guarantor of the Work: T Felfeli **Competing Interests** The authors have no competing interests to declare. **Funding** None **References**: 1. Miserocchi, E., Fogliato, G., Modorati, G. & Bandello, F. Review on the Worldwide Epidemiology of Uveitis. Eur J Ophthalmol 23, 705–717 (2013). 2. De Smet, M. D. et al. Understanding uveitis: The impact of research on visual outcomes. Prog Retin Eye Res 30, 452–470 (2011). 3. Conrady, C. D. & Yeh, S. A Review of Ocular Drug Delivery Platforms and Drugs for Infectious and Noninfectious Uveitis: The Past, Present, and Future. Pharmaceutics 13, 1224 (2021). Appendix 1. Summary of keywords and search terms used in systematic search of the selected databases Ovid MEDLINE: Epub Ahead of Print, In-Process & Other Non-Indexed Citations, Ovid MEDLINE® Daily and Ovid MEDLINE® Disease Terms: · retinal vasculitis · retinitis · chorioretinitis · scleritis · uveal diseases · choroid diseases · choroiditis · birdshot chorioretinopathy · multifocal choroiditis · pars planitis · docyclitis · iritis · uveitis · panuveitis · uveitis, anterior · behcet syndrome · uveitis, posterior · white dot syndromes · uveitis, intermediate Embase Classic+Embase Disease Terms: · retina vasculitis · retinitis · chorioretinitis · scleritis · choroiditis · birdshot chorioretinopathy · multifocal choroiditis · intermediate uveitis · iridocyclitis · iritis · uveitis · iridocyclitis · behcet disease · white dot syndrome · uveitis, intermediate · exudative retinitis · uveoretinitis · autoimmune uveitis · vogt koyanagi syndrome · blau syndrome · keratouveitis · uveoretinitis · iridocyclitis Cochrane Disease Terms: · Retinal Vasculitis · Retinitis · Choroiditis · Scleritis · Uveal Diseases · Choroid Diseases · Birdshot Chorioretinopathy · Chorioretinitis · Multifocal Choroiditis · Pars Planitis · Iridocyclitis · Iritis · Uveitis · Panuveitis · Uveitis, Anterior · Behcet Syndrome · Uveitis, Posterior · White Dot Syndromes · Uveitis, Intermediate
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