Rationale for systematic reviews

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

807 Scopus citations

Abstract

Systematic literature reviews including meta-analysis are invaluable scientific activities. The rationale for such reviews is well established. Health care providers, researchers, and policy makers are inundated with unmanageable amounts of information; they need systematic reviews to efficiently integrate existing information and provide data for rational decision making. Systematic reviews establish whether scientific findings are consistent and can be generalised across populations, settings, and treatment variations, or whether findings vary significantly by particular subsets. Meta-analysis in particular can increase power and precision of estimates of treatment effects and exposure risks. Finally, explicit methods used in systematic reviews limit bias and, hopefully, will improve reliability and accuracy of conclusions.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)597-599
Number of pages3
JournalBritish Medical Journal
Volume309
Issue number6954
StatePublished - Sep 3 1994

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Medicine

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