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 Table of Contents  
Year : 2022  |  Volume : 1  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 1-2

Birth of a new journal in anesthesiology

Department of Anaesthesiology, Maulana Azad Medical College, New Delhi, India

Date of Submission03-Apr-2022
Date of Acceptance04-Apr-2022
Date of Web Publication20-May-2022

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Sukhyanti Kerai
Department of Anaesthesiology, Maulana Azad Medical College, New Delhi - 110 002
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/jica.jica_10_22

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How to cite this article:
Saxena KN, Kerai S. Birth of a new journal in anesthesiology. J Ind Coll Anesth 2022;1:1-2

How to cite this URL:
Saxena KN, Kerai S. Birth of a new journal in anesthesiology. J Ind Coll Anesth [serial online] 2022 [cited 2022 Sep 27];1:1-2. Available from: https://www.jicajournal.in//text.asp?2022/1/1/1/345592

The Indian College of Anaesthesiologists was started in 2008 with objecting of enhancing academic endeavors of the Indian Society of Anaesthesiologists. After 14 years of successfully academic activities, a need for starting an academic journal was felt with an aim to encourage the publications of researches relating to practice of anesthesia, intensive care, and pain medicine. However, starting a new anesthesia journal during the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic was not without multiple obstacles and constraints.

The COVID-19 has had a profound impact on all aspects of our life. Apart from straining the health-care system, the pandemic has reshaped the research dynamics globally. It has curtailed most of the research activities and resources have been prioritized to COVID-19-related researches. The outbreak of COVID-19 has been accompanied by massive influx of published articles on COVID-19, with about 100,00 new articles added each month.[1] The pace of spread of virus has been matched by the pace of publication of articles related to COVID-19. LitCOVID, a curated literature hub, to track up-to-date published research on COVID-19 in PubMed has 220,950 (and growing) articles as on February 10, 2022.[2]

Recognizing the need for rapid information on COVID-19, reputable journals published related articles quickly, through expedited review, and made them freely available. In a recent study, it was found that the median time to acceptance for COVID-19-related paper was 6 days, as opposed to 15 days for Ebola related and 102 days for cardiovascular disease-related papers.[3] There have been the reports of concerns raised by experts regarding the methodological quality and validity of articles published after accelerated review process. Several prestigious journals have published retractions of earlier and potentially major COVID-related findings. Anderson et al. examined 68 retracted articles and found that 24 out of 68 papers were retracted for serious concerns such as data integrity, plagiarism, reporting or analysis, and IRB or privacy issues.[4]

The demand for immediate information on COVID-19 also led to surge in preprint repositories during ongoing pandemic. When quantified against other RNA virus outbreaks such as Ebola virus, an estimated average of 39·5 COVID-19 preprints has been posted per day during the COVID-19 pandemic compared to only once every 10·5 day during the Ebola virus epidemic in 2014.[5] The rise in preprint repositories led to wider dissemination of research material but has proven to have serious limitations. Non-peer-reviewed research can be prone to proofreading errors that might alter the interpretation of research. Fuelling of uncontrolled and unfiltered dissemination of information surrounding COVID-19 such as linking SARS-CoV-2 to HIV and snake hosts, has been observed with preprints.[6]

Worldwide, the outbreak of COVID-19 has had a substantial effect on the conduct of non-COVID-19 scientific research. More than 2000 trials registered on ClinicalTrials.gov were terminated because of the challenges of doing clinical research during the pandemic.[7] The findings from a survey on the impact of COVID-19 on activities of researches have shown majority reporting negatively impacted by pandemic. Difficulty in recruitment of participants in trials, suspension of research-related hiring, and access to resources were difficulties mentioned by them. As a consequence of these challenges, 18% decrease in non-COVID-19 research was found in a recent study.[8]

The COVID-19 pandemic has also accentuated the existing gender inequalities within the field of research, with studies suggesting less publication and less research projects being undertaken by female researchers than their male peers.[9] This has been attributed to females being more likely to be involved in care of families and children during the lockdown.

The pandemic also acted as a catalyst for innovations and changes. Establishment of research collaborative platforms, remote or decentralized clinical trials to remove hurdles to participant recruitment, and mixed methods study that used a methodological bricolage approach to field-based data collection are the few examples of innovations in the field of research.[10]

  Effect of Coronavirus Disease 2019 Pandemic on Anesthesia Research Top

The ongoing pandemic has changed the anesthesia specialty in the numerous ways. Anesthesiologists have risen the challenge of caring for critically ill patients with COVID-19. There was curtailment of elective surgery and conversion of wards and OTs into ICUs to accommodate unprecedented patient load. The research activities by anesthesiologists are also changed with increased submission of COVID-19 articles to anesthesiology journals. A recent editorial in Indian Journal of Anesthesia reported surge of COVID manuscript submissions in the early phase of COVID-19 pandemic.[11] The secondary articles such as reviews, commentaries, guidelines, and letter to editor were proportionately higher than studies with original data. There was reduction in peer-review speed of articles submitted to anesthesiology journals. Behera et al. studied the peer-review speed of 16 anesthesiology journals indexed in MEDLINE and found 55.6% decrease in peer-review time of COVID-19 articles compared to non-COVID-19 articles in 2020. A significant correlation was observed between peer-review time and h-index.[12]

Although there is no data to support the impact of pandemic on non-COVID-19 anesthesia research and challenges faced by researchers, there are anecdotal reports of fewer non-pandemic-related research submission. Apart from research activities, COVID-19 pandemic has severely impacted the conduct of thesis by anesthesia trainees, especially with non-COVID-19-related topics. A recent survey showed 83.52% of anesthesia trainee reporting some delays in the conduct of thesis, which is mandatory as a partial fulfillment for requirement of anesthesiology postgraduation degree.[13] As we enter the 3rd year of pandemic, it has now been recognized that adaption is key to meet the demands of new COVID-19 normal. To circumvent the uncertainties surrounding the completion of postgraduate thesis, it has been suggested to modify the student research experience with systematic review, meta-analysis, focusses literature review, teaching focused research or limited human subject research, etc. However, it is undeniable that pandemic has significantly disrupted the research in the field of anesthesia.

With the receding COVID-19 pandemic, we expect that the anesthesia research activities will be resumed soon and Journal of Indian College of Anaesthesiologists wish to provide quality research work related to the field of anesthesiology, critical care, and pain medicine.

  References Top

Harper L, Kalfa N, Beckers GM, Kaefer M, Nieuwhof-Leppink AJ, Fossum M, et al. The impact of COVID-19 on research. J Pediatr Urol 2020;16:715-6.  Back to cited text no. 1
LitCovid. Available from: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/research/coronavirus. [Last accessed on 2022 Apr 29].  Back to cited text no. 2
Palayew A, Norgaard O, Safreed-Harmon K, Andersen TH, Rasmussen LN, Lazarus JV. Pandemic publishing poses a new COVID-19 challenge. Nat Hum Behav 2020;4:666-9.  Back to cited text no. 3
Anderson C, Nugent K, Peterson C. Academic journal retractions and the COVID-19 pandemic. J Prim Care Community Health 2021;12:21501327211015592. Available from: https://doi.org/10.1177/21501327211015592. [Last accessed on 2022 Apr 29].  Back to cited text no. 4
Brierley L. Lessons from the influx of preprints during the early COVID-19 pandemic. Lancet Planet Health 2021;5:e115-7.  Back to cited text no. 5
Zarocostas J. How to fight an infodemic. Lancet 2020;395:676.  Back to cited text no. 6
Bassi A, Arfin S, Joshi R, Bathla N, Hammond NE, Rajbhandari D, et al. Challenges in operationalising clinical trials in India during the COVID-19 pandemic. Lancet Glob Health 2022;10:e317-9.  Back to cited text no. 7
Raynaud M, Goutaudier V, Louis K, Al-Awadhi S, Dubourg Q, Truchot A, et al. Impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on publication dynamics and non-COVID-19 research production. BMC Med Res Methodol 2021;21:255.  Back to cited text no. 8
Pinho-Gomes AC, Peters S, Thompson K, Hockham C, Ripullone K, Woodward M, et al. Where are the women? Gender inequalities in COVID-19 research authorship. BMJ Glob Health 2020;5:e002922.  Back to cited text no. 9
Ribarovska AK, Hutchinson MR, Pittman QJ, Pariante C, Spencer SJ. Gender inequality in publishing during the COVID-19 pandemic. Brain Behav Immun 2021;91:1-3.  Back to cited text no. 10
Mehdiratta L, Bajwa SJ, Kurdi MS, Bhattacharya PK. Research in COVID times-innovations, revolutions and contentions. Indian J Anaesth 2021;65:277-81.  Back to cited text no. 11
  [Full text]  
Behera BK, Radhakrishnan RV, Mohanty CR, Bellapukonda S. COVID-19 pandemic and its impact on peer review speed of anesthesiology journals: An observational study. J Anaesthesiol Clin Pharmacol 2021;37:57-62.  Back to cited text no. 12
  [Full text]  
Gandhi K, Gupta P, Jain D, Puri GD. Impact of COVID-19 pandemic on thesis by anaesthesia trainees in a tertiary care institute of north India. Anesth Analg 2021;133 3 Suppl 2:1915.  Back to cited text no. 13


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