The objective of this study was to determine whether a Hungarian language journal of clinical neuroscience, which is not indexed in medline, contains any reports of randomized or quasi-randomized clinical trials that are not also reported in medline-indexed publications. A cover-to-cover handsearch was performed of the journal Clinical Neuroscience/Ideggyógyászati Szemle, the official journal of Hungarian societies of neurology, neurosurgery, psychiatry and related clinical neurosciences, from its first volume in 1950 to the end of 1998; and a search of medline for other reports of the trials identified. Clinical trials in which patients were allocated to interventions by randomized, quasi-randomized or possibly randomized means were identified. Controlled trials were tabulated and coded as randomized controlled trials or controlled clinical trials according to the definitions of the Handsearch Manual of the Cochrane Collaboration. We identified three randomized and eight quasi-randomized trials. Six of the 11 trials were not reported in medline indexed publications.

In conclusion, to obtain a comprehensive controlled trials register, specialized healthcare journals printed in small numbers in the national languages of small countries should be searched.