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Trial protocols: time for more than tinkering

BMJ 2005; 330 doi: (Published 17 February 2005) Cite this as: BMJ 2005;330:421
  1. James Penston, consultant physician (
  1. Scunthorpe General Hospital, Scunthorpe, North Lincolnshire DN15 7BH

    EDITOR—The BMJ's recent requirement that authors include a trial protocol when submitting research papers for publication seems reasonable to expose deviations from the original protocol.1 However, Abbasi and Jones's comment that “identifying deviation from the protocol is another important step in ensuring that the findings of a study are reported with honesty and transparency” rings hollow.

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