Objective: To determine the frequency of abstracts presented at American College of Veterinary Surgeons (ACVS) meetings from 2001 to 2008 that were published as complete articles, to identify abstract characteristics associated with final full-text publication, and to examine consistency of information between abstracts and final full-text publications. Study Design: Observational bibliographic study. Methods: Abstracts were retrieved from published proceedings. Published articles were retrieved from bibliographic databases. Features of abstract and article authorship, design, and content were recorded. Regression analysis identified abstract features associated with article publication, and evaluated consistency between abstracts and final publications. Results: Seven hundred eighty-two of 1078 (73%) abstracts were published as complete articles. Median time to publication was 1 year; 90% were published within 3 years. Abstracts originating from academic institutions were published more often than abstracts from practice or industry sites (odds ratio 2.61, 95% confidence interval 1.68–4.05). Compared to their conference abstracts, 49% of articles contained major inconsistences including changes in study design, interventions, outcomes, sample size, and results. For each year elapsed between presentation and publication, the odds of major inconsistency increased 2.4 times (odds ratio 2.36, 95% confidence interval 1.57–3.55) for retrospective studies and 1.4 times (odds ratio 1.35, 95% confidence interval 1.17–1.56) for other study designs. Changes in study title and authorship were frequent, particularly in publications that contained major inconsistencies. Conclusion: ACVS abstracts were promptly and reliably published, but final full-text publications often differed substantially from the original abstracts.
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