Our previous post Flibanserin and blogs highlighted how adding blogs to the Trip index can be really useful.  But the search for flibanserin on Trip highlights lots of issues.

As you can see from the above image the ‘Ongoing clinical trials’ filter shows 14 closed trials (these are trials that are no longer recruiting) and that there are 8 controlled trials.  So, we can spot a shortfall of 6.  So, is that an issue?  It can be as it can suggest hidden trails, which are never a good thing.  I had a superficial look and found a couple of things of interest:

  • A number of the closed trials were halted for ‘administrative’ reasons.  I’m not sure how satisfactory that is.
  • Our controlled trials are identified via a filter and this has over-identified controlled trials and there are only actually 6 controlled trials in our index.  So, while we over-identified some, we possibly under-identified others.

Irrespective of the above points Trip makes it incredibly easy to spot potential publication bias.  If you’re interested in unbiased evidence this feature alone is very useful!