Bibliometric analysis is increasingly employed as a useful tool to assess the quantity and quality of research performance. The specific goal of the current study was to evaluate the performance of research output originating from Arab world and published in international Integrative and ComplementaryMedicine (ICM) journals.
Original scientific publications and reviews from the 22 Arab countries that were published in 22 international peer-reviewed ICM journals during all previous years up to December 31(st) 2013, were screened using the Web of Science databases.
Five hundred and ninety-one documents were retrieved from 19 ICM journals. The h-index of the set of papers under study was 47. The highest h-index was 27 for Morocco, 21 for Jordan, followed by 19 for each Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA), and Egypt, and the lowest h-index was 1 for each of Comoros, Qatar, and Syrian Arab Republic. No data related to ICM were published from Djibouti, and Mauritania. After adjusting for economy and population power, Somalia (89), Morocco (32.5), Egypt (31.1), Yemen (21.4), and Palestine (21.2) had the highest research productivity. The total number of citations was 9,466, with an average citation of 16 per document. The study identified 262 (44.3 %) documents with 39 countries in Arab-foreign country collaborations.Arab authors collaborated most with countries in Europe (24.2 %), followed by countries in the Asia-Pacific region (9.8 %).
Scientific research output in the ICM field in the Arab world region is increasing. Most ofpublications from Arab world in ICM filed were driven by societal use of medicinal plants and herbs. Search for new therapies from available low cost medicinal plants in Arab world has motivated many researchers in academia and pharmaceutical industry. Further investigation is required to support these findings in a wider journal as well as to improve research output in the field of ICM from Arab world region by investing in more national and international collaborative research project.