CONFLICT OF INTEREST: NONE DECLARED
Evidence based medicine (EBM) is the conscientious, explicit, judicious and reasonable use of modern, best evidence in making decisions about the care of individual patients. EBM integrates clinical experience and patient values with the best available research information. It is a movement which aims to increase the use of high quality clinical research in clinical decision making. EBM requires new skills of the clinician, including efficient literature-searching, and the application of formal rules of evidence in evaluating the clinical literature. The practice of evidence-based medicine is a process of lifelong, self-directed, problem-based learning in which caring for one’s own patients creates the need for clinically important information about diagnosis, prognosis, therapy and other clinical and health care issues. It is not “cookbook” with recipes, but its good application brings cost-effective and better health care. The key difference between evidence-based medicine and traditional medicine is not that EBM considers the evidence while the latter does not. Both take evidence into account; however, EBM demands better evidence than has traditionally been used. One of the greatest achievements of evidence-based medicine has been the development of systematic reviews and meta-analyses, methods by which researchers identify multiple studies on a topic, separate the best ones and then critically analyze them to come up with a summary of the best available evidence. The EBM-oriented clinicians of tomorrow have three tasks: a) to use evidence summaries in clinical practice; b) to help develop and update selected systematic reviews or evidence-based guidelines in their area of expertise; and c) to enrol patients in studies of treatment, diagnosis and prognosis on which medical practice is based.
Evidence Based Medicine; health; patients; decision making
The concept of ‘evidence-based medicine’ dates back to mid-19th century or even earlier. It remains pivotal in planning, funding and in delivering the health care. Clinicians, public health practitioners, health commissioners/purchasers, health planners, politicians and public seek formal ‘evidence’ in approving any form of health care provision. Essentially ‘evidence-based medicine’ aims at the conscientious, explicit and judicious use of the current best evidence in making decisions about the care of individual patients. It is in fact the ‘personalised medicine’ in practice. Since the completion of the human genome project and the rapid accumulation of huge amount of data, scientists and physicians alike are excited on the prospect of ‘personalised health care’ based on individual’s genotype and phenotype. The first decade of the new millennium now witnesses the transition from ‘evidence-based medicine’ to the ‘genomic medicine’. The practice of medicine, including health promotion and prevention of disease, stands now at a wide-open road as the scientific and medical community embraces itself with the rapidly expanding and revolutionising field of genomic medicine. This article reviews the rapid transformation of modern medicine from the ‘evidence-based medicine’ to ‘genomic medicine’.
Genetics; Genomics; Evidence-based medicine; Genomic medicine; Personalised medicine; Pharmacogenetics; Pharmacogenomics; Nutrigenomics
Evidence-based medicine (EBM) is an indispensable tool in clinical practice. Teaching and training of EBM to trainee clinicians is patchy and fragmented at its best. Clinically integrated teaching of EBM is more likely to bring about changes in skills, attitudes and behaviour. Provision of evidence-based health care is the most ethical way to practice, as it integrates up-to-date, patient-oriented research into the clinical decision making process, thus improving patients' outcomes. In this article, we aim to dispel the myth that EBM is an academic and statistical exercise removed from practice by providing practical tips for teaching the minimum skills required to ask questions and critically identify and appraise the evidence and presenting an approach to teaching EBM within the existing clinical and educational training infrastructure.
Evidence-based medicine (EBM) is the conscientious, explicit, and judicious use of the current best evidence in decision-making for the care of patients. Teaching best evidence practice in residency should include both formal or freestanding content, as well as integration into clinical scenarios and patient care. We sought to assess the attitudes, experience and knowledge of EBM in urology residency training across Canada.
An anonymous, cross-sectional, self-report questionnaire was completed by a convenience sample of 29 residents, including all chief urology residents in English-speaking programs across Canada. The survey included both open-ended and closed-ended questions designed to assess familiarity and attitudes towards EBM and potential barriers to developing EBM skills in a surgical training program. Questions were formatted to determine the understanding of statistical and analytical concepts, as well as familiarity of available EBM resources. Descriptive and correlative statistics were used to analyze the responses.
The response rate was 100%. An overwhelming majority of residents felt that EBM is an important component of the urology residency and journal club was the most common vehicle for discussing best evidence concepts. However, there was significant variation in the presence of freestanding, formal curricula across programs, with only 28% of residents signifying that they received any formal training in their program. The apparent level of understanding of important EBM terminology and resources appears to be limited. The most frequently stated barriers to incorporating EBM curricula into urology training were time constraints and a perceived lack of expert educators.
This self-report survey of urology chief residents identified the overwhelming acceptance of the importance of EBM in their training. Although best evidence practices appears to be addressed in journal clubs and in real-life clinical experiences, the obvious lack of familiarity and understanding of EBM content and resources would suggest a need for redoubling efforts to ensure appropriate exposure and instruction in our training programs.
Optimizing pain care requires ready access and use of best evidence within and across different disciplines and settings. The purpose of this randomized trial is to determine whether a technology-based “push” of new, high-quality pain research to physicians, nurses, and rehabilitation and psychology professionals results in better knowledge and clinical decision making around pain, when offered in addition to traditional “pull” evidence technology. A secondary objective is to identify disciplinary variations in response to evidence and differences in the patterns of accessing research evidence.
Physicians, nurses, occupational/physical therapists, and psychologists (n = 670) will be randomly allocated in a crossover design to receive a pain evidence resource in one of two different ways. Evidence is extracted from medical, nursing, psychology, and rehabilitation journals; appraised for quality/relevance; and sent out (PUSHed) to clinicians by email alerts or available for searches of the accumulated database (PULL). Participants are allocated to either PULL or PUSH + PULL in a randomized crossover design. The PULL intervention has a similar interface but does not send alerts; clinicians can only go to the site and enter search terms to retrieve evidence from the cumulative and continuously updated online database. Upon entry to the trial, there is three months of access to PULL, then random allocation. After six months, crossover takes place. The study ends with a final three months of access to PUSH + PULL. The primary outcomes are uptake and application of evidence. Uptake will be determined by embedded tracking of what research is accessed during use of the intervention. A random subset of 30 participants/ discipline will undergo chart-stimulated recall to assess the nature and depth of evidence utilization in actual case management at baseline and 9 months. A different random subset of 30 participants/ discipline will be tested for their skills in accessing evidence using a standardized simulation test (final 3 months). Secondary outcomes include usage and self-reported evidence-based practice attitudes and behaviors measured at baseline, 3, 9, 15 and 18 months.
The trial will inform our understanding of information preferences and behaviors across disciplines/practice settings. If this intervention is effective, sustained support will be sought from professional/health system initiatives with an interest in optimizing pain management.
Registered as NCT01348802 on clinicaltrials.gov.
Knowledge translation; Evidence-based healthcare; Implementation science; Health informatics; Pain; Physician; Rehabilitation; Nursing; Psychology
To introduce the concept of evidence-based medicine (EBM) to athletic trainers. This overview provides information on how EBM can affect the clinical practice of athletic training and enhance the care given to patients.
We searched the MEDLINE and CINHAL bibliographic databases using the terms evidence-based medicine and best practice and the online Index to Abstracts of Cochrane Reviews by group (injury, musculoskeletal injuries, and musculoskeletal) to identify reviews on topics pertinent to athletic training.
Evidence-based medical practice has 5 components: defining a clinically relevant question, searching for the best evidence, appraising the quality of the evidence, applying the evidence to clinical practice, and evaluating the process. Evidence-based medicine integrates the research evidence, clinician's expertise, and patient's preferences to guide clinical decision making. Critical to this effort is the availability of quality research on the effectiveness of sports medicine techniques. Athletic training outcomes research is lagging behind that of other health care professions.
Athletic trainers need to embrace the critical-thinking skills to assess the medical literature and incorporate it into their clinical practice. The profession should encourage more clinically related research and enhance the scientific foundation of athletic training. Evidence-based medicine provides an important next step in the growth of the athletic training profession.
best practice; clinical research
Patellofemoral complaints are frequently seen in younger and active patients. Clinical strategy is usually based on decreasing provoking activities as sports and demanding knee activities during work and leisure and reassuring the patient on the presumed good outcome.
Exercise therapy is also often prescribed although evidence on effectiveness is lacking.
The objective of this article is to present the design of a randomized clinical trial that examines the outcome of exercise therapy supervised by a physical therapist versus a clinically accepted "wait and see" approach (information and advice about the complaints only).
The research will address to both effectiveness and cost effectiveness of supervised exercise therapy in patients with patellofemoral pain syndrome (PFPS).
136 patients (adolescents and young adults) with patellofemoral pain syndrome are recruited in general practices and sport medicine centers. They will be randomly allocated receiving either 3 months of exercise therapy (or usual care.
The primary outcome measures are pain, knee function and perception of recovery after 3 months and 12 months of follow up and will be measured by self reporting.
Measurements will take place at baseline, 6 weeks, and 3 monthly until 1 year after inclusion in the study.
Secondary outcome measurements include an economic evaluation.
A cost-utility analysis will be performed that expresses health improvements in Quality Adjusted Life Years (QALYs) and incorporates direct medical costs and productivity costs
This study has been designed after reviewing the literature on exercise therapy for patellofemoral pain syndrome. It was concluded that to merit the effect of exercise therapy a trial based on correct methodological concept needed to be executed.
The PEX study is a randomized clinical trial where exercise therapy is compared to usual care. This trial started in April 2005 and will finish in June 2007. The first results will be available around December 2007.
Quality of decision making in modern health care is defined with reference to evidence-based medicine. There are concerns that this approach is insufficient for, and may thus threaten the future of, generalist primary care. We urgently need to extend our account of quality of knowledge use and decision making in order to protect and develop the discipline. Interpretive medicine describes an alternative framework for use in generalist care. Priorities for clinical practice and research are identified.
evidence-based medicine; generalism; quality
Doctors within the NHS are confronting major changes at work. While we endeavour to improve the quality of health care, junior doctors' hours have been reduced and the emphasis on continuing medical education has increased. We are confronted by a growing body of information, much of it invalid or irrelevant to clinical practice. This article discusses evidence based medicine, a process of turning clinical problems into questions and then systematically locating, appraising, and using contemporaneous research findings as the basis for clinical decisions. The computerisation of bibliographies and the development of software that permits the rapid location of relevant evidence have made it easier for busy clinicians to make best use of the published literature. Critical appraisal can be used to determine the validity and applicability of the evidence, which is then used to inform clinical decisions. Evidence based medicine can be taught to, and practised by, clinicians at all levels of seniority and can be used to close the gulf between good clinical research and clinical practice. In addition it can help to promote self directed learning and teamwork and produce faster and better doctors.
Objective: To describe the history and methods of the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Injury Surveillance System (ISS) as a complement to the sport-specific chapters that follow.
Background: The NCAA has maintained the ISS for intercollegiate athletics since 1982. The primary goal of the ISS is to collect injury and exposure data from a representative sample of NCAA institutions in a variety of sports. Relevant data are then shared with the appropriate NCAA sport and policy committees to provide a foundation for evidence-based decision making with regard to health and safety issues.
Description: The ISS monitors formal team activities, numbers of participants, and associated time-loss athletic injuries from the first day of formal preseason practice to the final postseason contest for 16 collegiate sports. In this special issue of the
Journal of Athletic Training, injury information in 15 collegiate sports from the period covering 1988–1989 to 2003–2004 is evaluated.
Conclusions: Athletic trainers and the NCAA have collaborated for 25 years through the NCAA ISS to create the largest ongoing collegiate sports injury database in the world. Data collection through the ISS, followed by annual review via the NCAA sport rules and sports medicine committee structure, is a unique mechanism that has led to significant advances in health and safety policy within and beyond college athletics. The publication of this special issue and the evolution of an expanded Web-based ISS enhance the opportunity to apply the health and safety decision-making process at the level of the individual athletic trainer and institution.
athletics; sports; exposures; athletic injuries; injury mechanisms; injury rates; injury surveillance; practices; games
Background and Purpose:
The sports physical therapist (SPT) is uniquely qualified to participate in the provision of preparticipation physical examinations (PPE). The PPE is recommended prior to athletic participation and required by many jurisdictions. There is little research to support the process and components; however, a number of professional organizations have recommendations that direct the PPE process.
Description of Topic and Related Evidence:
This clinical commentary highlights the role of the sports physical therapist and current evidence related to the preparticipation physical examination process. Data sources were limited to include professional positions and peer reviewed publications from 1988 through January 2013.
Relation to Clinical Practice:
Preparticipation physicals should be useful, comprehensive, and cost effective for the athlete and the health care team. Additional research is indicated in many of the areas of the PPE. The SPT is a valuable member of the health care team and can be a primary facilitator of the PPE in concert with the physician, athletic trainer, athletic organization administrators, and others.
Well‐designed and inclusive PPEs can be provided to meet the major objectives of identification of athletes at risk. Controversy continues over the extent of the cardiac screening component as well as other sport or athlete specific components.
Level of Evidence:
athletes; preparticipation physical examinations; screenings; sports physical therapy
Dentists need to make clinical decisions based on limited scientific evidence. In clinical practice, a clinician must weigh a myriad of evidences every day. The goal of evidence-based dentistry is to help practitioners provide their patients with optimal care. This is achieved by integrating sound research evidence with personal clinical expertise and patient values to determine the best course of treatment. Periodontology has a rich background of research and scholarship. Therefore, efficient use of this wealth of research data needs to be a part of periodontal practice. Evidence-based periodontology aims to facilitate such an approach and it offers a bridge from science to clinical practice. The clinician must integrate the evidence with patient preference, scientific knowledge, and personal experience. Most important, it allows us to care for our patients. Therefore, evidence-based periodontology is a tool to support decision-making and integrating the best evidence available with clinical practice.
Evidence; periodontal therapy; study designs
Background: The use of clinical decision support systems to facilitate the practice of evidence-based medicine promises to substantially improve health care quality.
Objective: To describe, on the basis of the proceedings of the Evidence and Decision Support track at the 2000 AMIA Spring Symposium, the research and policy challenges for capturing research and practice-based evidence in machine-interpretable repositories, and to present recommendations for accelerating the development and adoption of clinical decision support systems for evidence-based medicine.
Results: The recommendations fall into five broad areas—capture literature-based and practice-based evidence in machine-interpretable knowledge bases; develop maintainable technical and methodological foundations for computer-based decision support; evaluate the clinical effects and costs of clinical decision support systems and the ways clinical decision support systems affect and are affected by professional and organizational practices; identify and disseminate best practices for work flow–sensitive implementations of clinical decision support systems; and establish public policies that provide incentives for implementing clinical decision support systems to improve health care quality.
Conclusions: Although the promise of clinical decision support system–facilitated evidence-based medicine is strong, substantial work remains to be done to realize the potential benefits.
Decision aids have been developed in a number of health disciplines to support evidence-informed decision making, including patient decision aids and clinical practice guidelines. However, policy contexts differ from clinical contexts in terms of complexity and uncertainty, requiring different approaches for identifying, interpreting, and applying many different types of evidence to support decisions. With few studies in the literature offering decision guidance specifically to health policymakers, the present study aims to facilitate the structured and systematic incorporation of research evidence and, where there is currently very little guidance, values and other non-research-based evidence, into the policy making process. The resulting decision aid is intended to help public sector health policy decision makers who are tasked with making evidence-informed decisions on behalf of populations. The intent is not to develop a decision aid that will yield uniform recommendations across jurisdictions, but rather to facilitate more transparent policy decisions that reflect a balanced consideration of all relevant factors.
The study comprises three phases: a modified meta-narrative review, the use of focus groups, and the application of a Delphi method. The modified meta-narrative review will inform the initial development of the decision aid by identifying as many policy decision factors as possible and other features of methodological guidance deemed to be desirable in the literatures of all relevant disciplines. The first of two focus groups will then seek to marry these findings with focus group members' own experience and expertise in public sector population-based health policy making and screening decisions. The second focus group will examine issues surrounding the application of the decision aid and act as a sounding board for initial feedback and refinement of the draft decision aid. Finally, the Delphi method will be used to further inform and refine the decision aid with a larger audience of potential end-users.
The product of this research will be a working version of a decision aid to support policy makers in population-based health policy decisions. The decision aid will address the need for more structured and systematic ways of incorporating various evidentiary sources where applicable.
BACKGROUND: With increasing demand for health care, evidence-based medicine combined with health economics offers a method of optimizing allocation of limited resources. Depression is an illness that has a high prevalence with important medical, social and economic implications. More than 90% of depression is diagnosed and treated in general practice. AIM: To review the effectiveness of an evidence-based approach combined with health economics in deciding whether a tricyclic antidepressant (TCA) or a selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI) should be used in the treatment of depression in general practice. METHOD: An evidence-based strategy tested the two treatments against the criteria of appropriateness, efficacy, effectiveness and value for money. RESULTS: Although both drugs were equally efficacious, their relative effectiveness and value for money could not be accurately defined. CONCLUSION: An evidence-based approach does not make clear whether SSRIs or TCAs should be used for the treatment of depression in general practice. Research questions arising from general practice should be addressed in a relevant setting and should yield answers that will complement and support a more pragmatic system of medicine rather than seek to direct it.
Teaching Evidence Based Medicine (EBM) helps medical students to develop their decision making skills based on current best evidence, especially when it is taught in a clinical context. Few medical schools integrate Evidence Based Medicine into undergraduate curriculum, and those who do so, do it at the academic years only as a standalone (classroom) teaching but not at the clinical years. The College of Medicine at King Saud bin Abdulaziz University for Health Sciences was established in January 2004. The college adopted a four-year Problem Based Learning web-based curriculum. The objective of this paper is to present our experience in the integration of the EBM in the clinical phase of the medical curriculum. We teach EBM in 3 steps: first step is teaching EBM concepts and principles, second is teaching the appraisal and search skills, and the last step is teaching it in clinical rotations. Teaching EBM at clinical years consists of 4 student-centered tutorials. In conclusion, EBM may be taught in a systematic, patient centered approach at clinical rounds. This paper could serve as a model of Evidence Based Medicine integration into the clinical phase of a medical curriculum.
Clinical years; evidence based medicine; medical curriculum; medical education
Assisting patients and their families in complex decision making is a foundational skill in palliative care; however, palliative care clinicians and scientists have just begun to establish an evidence base for best practice in assisting patients and families in complex decision making. Decision scientists aim to understand and clarify the concepts and techniques of shared decision making (SDM), decision support, and informed patient choice in order to ensure that patient and family perspectives shape their health care experience. Patients with serious illness and their families are faced with myriad complex decisions over the course of illness and as death approaches. If patients lose capacity, then surrogate decision makers are cast into the decision-making role. The fields of palliative care and decision science have grown in parallel. There is much to be gained in advancing the practices of complex decision making in serious illness through increased collaboration. The purpose of this article is to use a case study to highlight the broad range of difficult decisions, issues, and opportunities imposed by a life-limiting illness in order to illustrate how collaboration and a joint research agenda between palliative care and decision science researchers, theorists, and clinicians might guide best practices for patients and their families.
A variety of methods exists for teaching and learning evidence-based medicine (EBM). However, there is much debate about the effectiveness of various EBM teaching and learning activities, resulting in a lack of consensus as to what methods constitute the best educational practice. There is a need for a clear hierarchy of educational activities to effectively impart and acquire competence in EBM skills. This paper develops such a hierarchy based on current empirical and theoretical evidence.
EBM requires that health care decisions be based on the best available valid and relevant evidence. To achieve this, teachers delivering EBM curricula need to inculcate amongst learners the skills to gain, assess, apply, integrate and communicate new knowledge in clinical decision-making. Empirical and theoretical evidence suggests that there is a hierarchy of teaching and learning activities in terms of their educational effectiveness: Level 1, interactive and clinically integrated activities; Level 2(a), interactive but classroom based activities; Level 2(b), didactic but clinically integrated activities; and Level 3, didactic, classroom or standalone teaching.
All health care professionals need to understand and implement the principles of EBM to improve care of their patients. Interactive and clinically integrated teaching and learning activities provide the basis for the best educational practice in this field.
Background and objectives
Evidence-based health care requires clinicians to engage with use of evidence in decision-making at the workplace. A learner-centred, problem-based course that integrates e-learning in the clinical setting has been developed for application in obstetrics and gynaecology units. The course content uses the WHO reproductive health library (RHL) as the resource for systematic reviews. This project aims to evaluate a clinically integrated teaching programme for incorporation of evidence provided through the WHO RHL. The hypothesis is that the RHL-EBM (clinically integrated e-learning) course will improve participants' knowledge, skills and attitudes, as well as institutional practice and educational environment, as compared to the use of standard postgraduate educational resources for EBM teaching that are not clinically integrated.
The study will be a multicentre, cluster randomized controlled trial, carried out in seven countries (Argentina, Brazil, Democratic Republic of Congo, India, Philippines, South Africa, Thailand), involving 50-60 obstetrics and gynaecology teaching units. The trial will be carried out on postgraduate trainees in the first two years of their training. In the intervention group, trainees will receive the RHL-EBM course. The course consists of five modules, each comprising self-directed e-learning components and clinically related activities, assignments and assessments, coordinated between the facilitator and the postgraduate trainee. The course will take about 12 weeks, with assessments taking place pre-course and 4 weeks post-course. In the control group, trainees will receive electronic, self-directed EBM-teaching materials. All data collection will be online.
The primary outcome measures are gain in EBM knowledge, change in attitudes towards EBM and competencies in EBM measured by multiple choice questions (MCQs) and a skills-assessing questionniare administered eletronically. These questions have been developed by using questions from validated questionnaires and adapting them to the current course. Secondary outcome measure will be educational environment towards EBM which will be assessed by a specifically developed questionnaire.
The trial will determine whether the RHL EBM (clinically integrated e-leraning) course will increase knowledge, skills and attitudes towards EBM and improve the educational environment as compared to standard teaching that is not clinically integrated. If effective, the RHL-EBM course can be implemented in teaching institutions worldwide in both, low-and middle income countries as well as industrialized settings. The results will have a broader impact than just EBM training because if the approach is successful then the same educational strategy can be used to target other priority clinical and methodological areas.
Evidence based medicine (EBM) is an expanding field that combines clinical intuition with the best available evidence in clinical decision making. The shift to evidence based rationale encourages educating future physicians to formulate appropriate research questions and develop critical appraisal skills that are needed to practice EBM.
This article identifies areas where clinicians may struggle with epidemiological terminology when critically appraising the literature. A review of the relevant terminology encountered in studies that focus on therapy, harm, diagnosis and prognosis can be beneficial to the clinician and are explained within this article.
Blinding; concealment; definition; evidence-based medicine; randomization; terminology
Advances in neuroscience and biomedical engineering deeply affect the clinical practice of physical medicine & rehabilitation. New research findings and engineering tools are continuously made available that have the potential of dramatically enhancing the ability of clinicians to design effective rehabilitation interventions. This quickly evolving research field is difficult to track because related literature appears in a wide range of scientific journals. There is a need for a scientific journal that offers to its readership a forum at the intersection of neuroscience, biomedical engineering, and physical medicine & rehabilitation. The Journal of NeuroEngineering and Rehabilitation (JNER) is intended to fill this gap and foster cross-fertilizations among these disciplines. By making readily available to clinicians selected studies with potential impact on physical medicine & rehabilitation, JNER is anticipated to foster the development of novel and more effective rehabilitation strategies. Conversely, by presenting clinical problems to a readership of neuroscientists and engineers, JNER is expected to generate innovative work in neuroscience and biomedical engineering with future applications to physical medicine & rehabilitation. JNER will leverage on Open Access as a means to guarantee that its content is readily available to scientists, clinicians, and the general public thus promoting scientific and technological advances that are relevant to rehabilitation. JNER is an Open Access initiative. Open Access assures dissemination to the widest possible audience and is seen by many as essential for publicly funded research. BioMed Central offers an outstanding platform to make JNER possible and allow neuroscientists, biomedical engineers, and clinicians to see their work published in a timely manner and thus make an immediate impact in the field of rehabilitation. JNER will focus on innovative work with higher likelihood of a dramatic impact on rehabilitation. Thus, priority will be given to outstanding and visionary scientific reports, i.e. those proposing exceptionally innovative concepts with great potential in the field.
For the practicing physician, the behavioral implications of preventing, diagnosing, and treating cancer are many and varied. Fortunately, an enhanced capacity in informatics may help create a redesigned ecosystem in which applying evidence-based principles from behavioral medicine will become a routine part of care. Innovation to support this evolution will be spurred by the “meaningful use” criteria stipulated by the Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health (HITECH) Act of 2009, and by focused research and development efforts within the broader health information ecosystem. The implications for how to better integrate evidence-based principles in behavioral medicine into oncology care through both spheres of development are discussed within the framework of the cancer control continuum. The promise of using the data collected through these tools to accelerate discovery in psycho-oncology is also discussed. If nurtured appropriately, these developments should help accelerate successes against cancer by altering the behavioral milieu.
Research is designed to answer a question or to describe a phenomenon in a scientific process. Sports physical therapists must understand the different research methods, types, and designs in order to implement evidence‐based practice. The purpose of this article is to describe the most common research designs used in sports physical therapy research and practice. Both experimental and non‐experimental methods will be discussed.
Research design; research methods; scientific process
Practice guidelines are systematically developed statements and recommendations that assist the physicians and patients in making decisions about appropriate health care measures for specific clinical circumstances taking into account specific national health care structures. The 1st revision of the S-2k guideline of the German Sepsis Society in collaboration with 17 German medical scientific societies and one self-help group provides state-of-the-art information (results of controlled clinical trials and expert knowledge) on the effective and appropriate medical care (prevention, diagnosis, therapy and follow-up care) of critically ill patients with severe sepsis or septic shock. The guideline had been developed according to the “German Instrument for Methodological Guideline Appraisal” of the Association of the Scientific Medical Societies (AWMF). In view of the inevitable advancements in scientific knowledge and technical expertise, revisions, updates and amendments must be periodically initiated. The guideline recommendations may not be applied under all circumstances. It rests with the clinician to decide whether a certain recommendation should be adopted or not, taking into consideration the unique set of clinical facts presented in connection with each individual patient as well as the available resources.
guideline; German Sepsis Society; German Sepsis Aid; severe sepsis; septic shock; prevention; diagnosis; treatment; follow-up care
Wide interest in evidence based medicine (EBM) and its value in patient care, insurance payment decisions, and public health planning has triggered intense medical journal and media coverage that merits review, explanation, and comment.
Published EBM data vary in quality for reasons that have been the subject of many perceptive literature reviews. Study design can be faulted, and conflicts of interest, personal and economic, can potentially bias study results and their publication. Practical guides for data evaluation are presented here, with discussion of technical and sociological issues that affect information quality and its clinical application.
Clinical practice often appears to resist good evidence in making clinical choices. Personal views of some practicing physicians about EBM are presented that underlie the occasional difficulties in applying valid research information in patient care. Improvements in study design and publication standards may enhance the clinical application of evidence-based information.
EBM guided practice holds promise to improve outcomes and expense, to standardize and streamline process in ways that make for much safer patient care.