Tag Archives: anesthesiology

Hundreds of peer-reviewed papers in the field of anaesthesiology are about to be retracted because their data was fabricated.

Hundreds of peer-reviewed papers in the field of anesthesiology are about to be retracted because their data was fabricated.

After more than a decade of suspicion about the work of anesthesiologist Yoshitaka Fujii, formerly of Toho University in Tokyo, investigations by journals and universities have concluded that he fabricated data on an epic scale. At least half of the roughly 200 papers he authored on responses to drugs after surgery are in line for retraction in the coming months.

Like many cases of fraud, this one has raised questions about how the misconduct went undetected for so long. But the scope and duration of Fujii’s deception have shaken multiple journals and the entire field of anesthesiology, which has seen other high-profile frauds in the past few years.

Fujii’s work was published in many different journals, where it appears none of his referees ever checked his data. Worse, this is not the first such case in this field.
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A investigation has found that Japanese anesthesiologist, Yoshitaka Fujii, fabricated a 172 scientific papers over the past 19 years.

A investigation has found that Japanese anesthesiologist, Yoshitaka Fujii, fabricated a 172 scientific papers over the past 19 years.

The panel focused on 212 of 249 known Fujii papers. It tried to review the raw data, laboratory notebooks, and records on the patients or animal subjects involved. Committee members also interviewed relevant people. Among the 172 papers judged bogus, the report claims that 126 studies of randomized, double-blind, controlled trials “were totally fabricated.” The committee identified only three valid papers. For another 37 papers, the panel could not conclusively determine if there had been fabrication. …

The panel said that the responsibility of those co-authors ranges from “serious” to “none at all.” The only one of Fujii’s co-authors specifically named in the summary is University of Tsukuba anesthesiologist Hidenori Toyooka. The report says Toyooka “was not involved in fabrication but bears significant responsibility” since he was Fujii’s supervising professor both at Tsukuba and when they both worked at Tokyo Medical and Dental University. Toyooka is listed as a co-author of many of the papers cited by the 23 journal editors. … At the same time, the investigation found that some scientists were unaware Fujii had included them as co-authors. In one case, two supposed co-authors told the panel their signatures on a submission cover letter were forged. [emphasis mine]

For a scientist to get that many fabricated papers published for that long in peer-reviewed journals strongly suggests that there is widespread corruption in his field, which in this case is anesthesiology.