Why so many papers this week? Normally the Friday list would contain 60 to 70 papers—this week we have 129, or double the usual number. What is going on?
The answer begins earlier this year, when we noticed a change in the way that papers published online in the journal PAIN, the official publication of the International Association for the Study of Pain (IASP) and the top specialty journal in the field, were appearing in PubMed. Previously, online publication of a new paper in PAIN was followed within a few days by posting of the citation in PubMed. From there, the papers were pulled into the Papers of the Week each week by our automated search.
A few months ago, we started to see a several month delay between online publishing and PubMed indexing. The result was that very few PAIN papers were appearing in Papers of the Week, and those that did show up were weeks old.
We contacted the IASP, and the good folks there alerted the publisher Elsevier to the problem. We are happy to report that the glitch appears to be fixed now. But the delay in posting produced a backlog of papers that hit PubMed all at once over the last few days. That resulted in a bolus of 67 PAIN papers swelling the list of Papers of the Week for this week.
Next week we hope to be back to normal, bringing you the very latest publications from PAIN and all the other journals.
We are sorry that the large number of papers this week made it impossible to evaluate them all for potential highlighting as Editors’ Picks. All the more reason we ask our members to look over this week’s papers and make a comment on any that you find important or particularly outstanding in one way or another.
And, by the way, did you know that you can now subscribe to receive an email alert when the Papers of the Week publish? Members can go to their profile page, and look for the Subscriptions link in the left hand column under Account Management.