Forty-six data reports which appeared in the Journal of Manipulative and Physiological Therapeutics from 1986 to 1988 were reviewed according to specific methodological criteria. There appears to be a need for improved study design in contemporary chiropractic research. Experimental and quasi-experimental studies were most commonly deficient in the areas of reliable methods of measurement, the use of blind assessors and blind, or at least naive, study subjects. Common flaws in surveys were: failure to test the survey instrument prior to the study, not stating the response rate, and omitting discussion of the question of confidentiality. The results confirmed findings obtained in a similar study of data reports of an Australian peer-reviewed chiropractic journal. The use of various types of checklists is recommended for authors and reviewers of chiropractic scientific material.
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