A SWOT (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats) Analysis of ChatGPT in the Medical Literature: Concise Review

Background: ChatGPT is a 175-billion-parameter natural language processing model that is already involved in scientific content and publications. Its influence ranges from providing quick access to information on medical topics, assisting in generating medical and scientific articles and papers, performing medical data analyses, and even interpreting complex data sets. Objective: The future role of ChatGPT remains uncertain and a matter of debate already shortly after its release. This review aimed to analyze the role of ChatGPT in the medical literature during the first 3 months after its release. Methods: We performed a concise review of literature published in PubMed from December 1, 2022, to March 31, 2023. To find all publications related to ChatGPT or considering ChatGPT, the search term was kept simple (“ChatGPT” in AllFields). All publications available as full text in German or English were included. All accessible publications were evaluated according to specifications by the author team (eg, impact factor, publication modus, article type, publication speed, and type of ChatGPT integration or content). The conclusions of the articles were used for later SWOT (strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats) analysis. All data were analyzed on a descriptive basis. Results: Of 178 studies in total, 160 met the inclusion criteria and were evaluated. The average impact factor was 4.423 (range 0-96.216), and the average publication speed was 16 (range 0-83) days. Among the articles, there were 77 editorials (48,1%), 43 essays (26.9%), 21 studies (13.1%), 6 reviews (3.8%), 6 case reports (3.8%), 6 news (3.8%), and 1 meta-analysis (0.6%). Of those, 54.4% (n=87) were published as open access, with 5% (n=8) provided on preprint servers. Over 400 quotes with information on strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats were detected. By far, most (n=142, 34.8%) were related to weaknesses. ChatGPT excels in its ability to express ideas clearly and formulate general contexts comprehensibly. It performs so well that even experts in the field have difficulty identifying abstracts generated by ChatGPT. However, the time-limited scope and the need for corrections by experts were mentioned as weaknesses and threats of ChatGPT. Opportunities include assistance in formulating medical issues for nonnative English speakers, as well as the possibility of timely participation in the development of such artificial intelligence tools since it is in its early stages and can therefore still be influenced. Conclusions: Artificial intelligence tools such as ChatGPT are already part of the medical publishing landscape. Despite their apparent opportunities, policies and guidelines must be implemented to ensure benefits in education, clinical practice, and research and protect against threats such as scientific misconduct, plagiarism, and inaccuracy.

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