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Anaesthetics journals retract further articles after ethics approval is found lacking

BMJ 2012; 344 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.e2019 (Published 13 March 2012) Cite this as: BMJ 2012;344:e2019
  1. Ingrid Torjesen
  1. 1London

The world’s leading anaesthesia journals have now been forced to retract research articles by two anaesthetists because their studies have been found to have been conducted without full ethics approval.

Eight articles in four journals by one anaesthetist, Yoshitaka Fujii in Japan, have had to be retracted because institutional review board approval for the research on which the articles are based cannot be verified. Dr Fujii has now been dismissed by his research organisation.

This follows the retraction of 88 articles by Joachim Boldt in Germany last year by 18 journals for the same reason. An institutional review board, sometimes known as an independent ethics committee or ethical review board, must approve the study design before research takes place and can demand changes to the proposals. It then continues to monitor and review the study.

In September 2011 Toho University in Japan started an investigation to look at the credibility of nine papers published by Dr Fujii. All the research was found to have …

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