Heuristics

Two papers, two years apart covering closely related territory: Can we rely on the best trial? A comparison of individual trials and systematic reviews. Glasziou PP et al. BMC Med Res Methodol. 2010 Mar 18;10:23 How Often Does an Individual Trial Agree with Its Corresponding Meta-Analysis? A Meta-Epidemiologic Study. Tam WWS et al. PLoS ONE 9(12): e113994. Heuristics (from Wikipedia): “A heuristic technique, often called … Continue reading Heuristics

The unreliability of systematic reviews

Bottom line: Systematic reviews, based on published journal articles, cannot be relied upon to be accurate.   Selective Publication of Antidepressant Trials and Its Influence on Apparent Efficacy Turner EH et al. N Engl J Med. 2008 Jan 17;358(3):252-60. Effect of reporting bias on meta-analyses of drug trials: reanalysis of meta-analyses Hart B et al. BMJ. 2012 Jan 3;344:d7202.   These are extremely important papers … Continue reading The unreliability of systematic reviews

Article review: How to conduct systematic reviews more expeditiously?

How to conduct systematic reviews more expeditiously? Tsertsvadze A et al. Systematic Reviews 2015, 4:160 This paper is a great overview of the current challenges/possibilities of undertaking rapid systematic reviews.  As with my last post (Two main fronts on the speeding up of systematic reviews) it supports the two main areas of activity I had discussed but adds in a third: Application of innovative technologies … Continue reading Article review: How to conduct systematic reviews more expeditiously?

Two main fronts on the speeding up of systematic reviews

Yesterday was the last day of a really interesting two-day symposium on automation and systematic reviews in Bristol.  The main participants were computer scientists and systematic reviewers; I belonged in the relatively small ‘other’ group. It struck me that the focus was on breaking down the steps of systematic reviews (as seen in a few papers, one reviewed on this blog – click here) and … Continue reading Two main fronts on the speeding up of systematic reviews

Article review: Systematic review automation technologies

In 2014 Guy Tsafnat, Paul Glasziou and others wrote the paper Systematic review automation technologies where the authors “…surveyed literature describing informatics systems that support or automate the processes of systematic review or each of the tasks of the systematic review.“ It is an excellent overview of the potential of automation in the systematic review process.  They do this by breaking down the systematic review … Continue reading Article review: Systematic review automation technologies

List of articles (automation, text-mining etc.)

Below is a list of articles related to increasing value in evidence synthesis.  It focuses on automation techniques such as text-mining and machine learning. There is a separate, non-automation list: List of articles 2006 Reducing workload in systematic review preparation using automated citation classification Cohen AM et al. J Am Med Inform Assoc. 2006 Mar-Apr;13(2):206-19. 2007 Text Classification on Imbalanced Data: Application to Systematic Review … Continue reading List of articles (automation, text-mining etc.)

External link to Website of interest: BestBETs

Website of interest: BestBETs

BestBETs have been around for at least ten years and is produced by the Emergency Department of Manchester Royal Infirmary, UK.  The website states that it’s aim is: “…to provide rapid evidence-based answers to real-life clinical questions, using a systematic approach to reviewing the literature.” The methodology has been static over the years and each answer/review follows the same structure.  Using the recent review (Fluid … Continue reading Website of interest: BestBETs

Rapid versus systematic reviews

This review links to two articles published on the Trip Databases ‘Liberating the literature’ blog.  Conflict of Interest – I wrote both of them.  The first article was published in April 2012 and was a list of articles that compared rapid versus systematic methods.  The second article (published shortly afterwards) was a list of lessons learned, which I reproduce below: Lesson 1: The notion of … Continue reading Rapid versus systematic reviews

Motivations for this blog

There are so many reasons to address the area of value in evidence synthesis…. Broadly, I get depressed by the lack of challenge to the hegemonic position of long-winded systematic reviews in the world of EBM. If it was proven that systematic reviews, using ‘standard’ methods produced ‘accurate’ answers then I’d be more sympathetic.  But it’s demonstrably true that systematic reviews, based on published journal … Continue reading Motivations for this blog

List of articles

Below is a list of articles related to increasing value in evidence synthesis.  It may be about increasing the speed of reviewing, critiques of current methods or comparisons of methods. It does not include articles that report on computer supported techniques such as text-mining, computer learning etc.  There is a separate list available, on this site: List of articles (automation, text-mining etc.). 2000 The use … Continue reading List of articles