Authoritative, clear, concise, and practical, this highly acclaimed book continues to be an essential text for all medical, surgical and health professionals who want to have an easily accessible, quick reference to systematically reviewing the literature.
- Learn about the key steps to reviewing the literature
- Carry out your own reviews with expert guidance
- Assess the credibility of recommendations in published reviews and practice guidelines
New for the second edition
- Many new case studies
- Examples from medicine, surgery, health professions and consumer information
- Expanded, updated and revised with practical guidelines and invaluable advice
The authors are veterans of over 150 systematic reviews and have helped form policy and practice. They have ensured that this concise, practical text, which avoids technical jargon, continues to be the first reference for all health professionals undertaking literature reviews.
Table of Contents
Steps of a systematic review
Framing questions for a review
Identifying relevant literature
Assessing the quality of the literature
Summarizing the evidence
Interpreting the findings
Identifying and appraising systematic reviews
Reviewing evidence on safety of a public health intervention
Reviewing evidence on effectiveness of therapy
Reviewing evidence on accuracy of a test
Reviewing qualitative evidence to evaluate patient experience
Reviewing evidence on the effects of educational intervention
Gauging strength of evidence to guide decision making
To use or not to use a therapy? Incorporating evidence on adverse effects
Khalid S Khan is Professor of Women's Health and Clinical Epidemiology at Barts and the London Medical School in Queen Mary, University of London. He is a clinician, trained in systematic reviews and evidence-based medicine (EBM). Qualified in medical education, he runs journal club and other EBM activities, including evidence-supported ward rounds and workshops on critical appraisal. As a clinical academic he leads a number of systematic review projects, teaches undergraduates and postgraduates, and provides peer review to several clinical journals.
Regina Kunz has recently been appointed Director of the Institute for Insurance Medicine at the University and University Hospital Basel, Switzerland. Nephrologist and clinical epidemiologist by training, she has comprehensive expertise in doing systematic reviews, meta-analyses and health technology assessments. Then, her clinical practice reminded her day by day how important it is to have high quality syntheses at hand when advising patients and making management decisions. Today, the lack of high quality evidence synthesis in insurance medicine is a painful experience that urgently needs change. Her academic activities within the Grading of Recommendations Assessment, Development and Evaluation (GRADE) working group on guideline methodology and as a long-standing board member of the Guidelines International Network G-I-N corroborate the need for high quality reviews and meta-analyses in all areas of healthcare, to provide physicians, patients and decision makers with sound recommendations, and the difficulties of delivering convincing recommendations in the absence of such reviews. She is the founding member of the German Network EbM, editor of the German textbook Evidence-based Medicine in Clinic and Practice, and has a great deal of experience in running teaching courses on systematic reviews and meta-analyses, the GRADE-methodology and evidence-based medicine worldwide.
Jos Kleijnen is the Director of an independent company, Kleijnen Systematic Reviews Ltd and Professor of Systematic Reviews in Health Care and Maastricht University. Following his graduation from medical school, he pursued a career as a clinical epidemiologist and has a wealth of experience in conducting and disseminating systematic reviews and other research. He is a member of various steering groups and advisory committees related to systematic reviews and health technology assessment. He was the founding Director of the Dutch Cochrane Centre, Professor and Director of the Centre for Reviews and Dissemination at the University of York, and is a member of several Methods Working Groups of the Cochrane Collaboration. He is an editor of the Cochrane Peripheral Vascular Diseases Review Group and also teaches in courses on systematic reviews and EBM in several countries. This includes a collaboration with the Horten Centre in Zurich, Switzerland and with the Vienna School of Clinical Research in Vienna.
Gerd Antes is the Director of the German Cochrane Centre, Freiburg. He is a medical statistician and has in-depth knowledge of the mathematics behind meta-analyses, heterogeneity, funnel plots, etc. As well as his interests in methodological work, statistical computing and medical informatics, he set up the German Cochrane initiative and spends considerable time supporting the progress of EBM and systematic reviews. He has been a founding member and previous president of the German EBM Network. He has also been a member of the Cochrane Collaboration Steering Group for several years. He is a member of the German Committee for Clinical Guidelines and of the German Commission for Vaccination. One of his activities includes teaching and training science journalists. He has also successfully contributed to establish the German Register for Clinical Trials.