- Concept symbolization of cited document An analysis on medical journal articles
- No.30, p.133-146
In order to explore how one particular scientific information can be passed from one researcher to another through citaion process, 258 papers published in medical journals were reviewed, all of which cite, one way or other, T. Kawasaki’s original paper reporting Kawasaki disease (MCLS). A thorough examination was made on these papers to determine the degree of application and interpretation of the original report on these research papers.
1) There are some instances when the author’s intension was not clear whether he refers specifically to the Kawasaki’s report or just states MCLS in general. 2) When several papers are chosen by the author for citation on a specific topic, it is often difficult to tell from which paper the information comes, or all of these established papers contain the same information. 3) In some cases, the paper accompanying a citation of the Kawasaki’s report does not necessarily reflect the original report’s content. Also, a further examination was carried out to confirm whether or not the Kawasaki’s report is cited repeatedly several times in single research paper.
The 258 research papers quoting the Kawasaki’s report are devided into 10 categories, according to the clinical characteristics they represent. 79% of these papers state that the Kawasaki paper is the first report introducing MCLS in medical community, thus “standard symbol”. 5 papers use the Kawasaki’s report merely as a source of the disease, thus “concept symbol” of MCLS.
With these findings, I can assume that the discrepancy between the interpretation of the Kawasaki’s report i n these research papers and the original report itself may arise from the fact that the research papers later published may have been based on advanced knowledge or technology relating to MCLS, resulting the citation’s transformation from “nonce symbol” to “concept symbol”.
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