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Reporting of Systematic Reviews in Medical Journals: Points to Ponder

Author:

S. Perera

University of Peradeniya, Peradeniya, LK
About S.
Faculty of Medicine
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Abstract

Reliance on recent evidence to answer a clinical question is the key element in Evidence Based Medicine (EBM). The practice of EBM involves identifying the best evidence pertaining to a given situation and integrating it with clinical expertise and patient values in making the best decision with regard to the situation1. Finding the best evidence can be a difficult task given the proliferation of information generated by individual studies, which may be of different quality in methodology and context2. In such a situation, conducting Systematic Reviews is considered the least biased, most logical and scientific approach to find the best evidence for a given scenario. Credibility of the conclusions of a SR depends on the reliability of its methodology and the quality of reporting the systematic review. Authors of SRs are expected to report a complete, accurate and transparent account of the procedure and results. This article focuses on the issues observed in reporting of SRs in medical journals and aims to provide an account on some aspects to consider when reviewing SR articles. A brief account on the methodology, standards and guidelines of the SR process is presented along with the significance of the technicalities of some important steps that need to be followed. SRs generate new knowledge based on already existing findings, aiming at different types of potential users such as policy makers, healthcare providers, patients and researchers1. It is important that reviewers strictly adhere to the guidelines and standards in conducting the review and in reporting their work to produce high quality and reliable SRs.
How to Cite: Perera, S., 2022. Reporting of Systematic Reviews in Medical Journals: Points to Ponder. Sri Lanka Journal of Forensic Medicine, Science & Law, 13(2), pp.1–5. DOI: http://doi.org/10.4038/sljfmsl.v13i2.7928
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Published on 16 Dec 2022.
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