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Systematic Reviews

A guide to understanding and creating systematic reviews.

Why Practice EBP?

  • Medical research is continually discovering improved treatment methods and therapies
  • Research findings are often delayed in being implemented into clinical practice
  • Clinicians must stay current with changing therapies
  • EBP has been shown to keep clinicians up to date

K. Jeffrey, L. Maggio, & M. Blanchard. Introduction to EBM. Alumni Medical Library Website

Evidence Based Practice's 5-Steps

EBP is primarily based on 5 defined steps:

  1. Asking Focused Questions
  2. -convert information need into an answerable question

  3. Locating Research Literature
  4. -track down the best evidence to answer the question

  5. Critical Appraisal
  6. -test evidence for validity and clinical usefulness

  7. Making a Decision
  8. -apply the results in clinical practice

  9. Evaluating Performance
  10. -evaluate the performance of evidence-based decisions

Use PICO to formulate a clinical question

To help formulate a "searchable" question, you can define different parts of your case using PICO.  This will focus your research and help you make more effective decisions while researching.

Patient:          What are the characteristics of the patient or population?

Intervention:   What do you want to do with this patient (e.g. treat, diagnose, observe)?

Comparison:  Is there an alternative treatment to consider (e.g. placebo, drug, surgery)?

Outcome:        What are the relevant outcomes (e.g. morbidity, death, complications)?