Document Detail

Analysis of the reporting of search strategies in Cochrane systematic reviews.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  19158999     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
BACKGROUND: The Cochrane Handbook for Systematic Reviews of Interventions provides instructions for documenting a systematic review's electronic database search strategy, listing elements that should be in the description. Complete documentation of the search strategy allows readers to evaluate the search when critically appraising a review's quality. OBJECTIVE: The research analyzed recently published Cochrane reviews to determine whether instructions for describing electronic database search strategies were being followed. METHODS: Eighty-three new reviews added to the Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews in the first quarter of 2006 were selected for analysis. Eighteen were subsequently excluded because their searches were conducted only in the specialized registers of Cochrane review groups. The remaining sixty-five reviews were analyzed for the seven elements of an electronic database search strategy description listed in the Cochrane Handbook, using dual review with consensus. RESULTS: Of the 65 reviews analyzed, none included all 7 recommended elements. Four reviews (6%) included 6 elements. Thirty-two percent (21/65) included 5 or more elements, with 68% (44/65) including 4 or fewer. Three included only 2 elements. The 65 reviews represented 41 different Cochrane review groups. CONCLUSION: The instructions from the Cochrane Handbook for reporting search strategies are not being consistently employed by groups producing Cochrane reviews.
Adriana Yoshii; Daphne A Plaut; Kathleen A McGraw; Margaret J Anderson; Kay E Wellik
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Publication Detail:
Type:  Journal Article    
Journal Detail:
Title:  Journal of the Medical Library Association : JMLA     Volume:  97     ISSN:  1558-9439     ISO Abbreviation:  J Med Libr Assoc     Publication Date:  2009 Jan 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2009-01-22     Completed Date:  2009-02-23     Revised Date:  2009-11-18    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  101132728     Medline TA:  J Med Libr Assoc     Country:  United States    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  21-9     Citation Subset:  IM    
Health Science Center Libraries, University of Florida-Jacksonville, 653-1 West 8th Street, Jacksonville, FL 32209-6511, USA.
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MeSH Terms
Abstracting and Indexing as Topic
Databases, Bibliographic / standards,  statistics & numerical data
Guideline Adherence
Guidelines as Topic
Information Storage and Retrieval / methods*
Medical Subject Headings
Meta-Analysis as Topic
Periodicals as Topic / statistics & numerical data*
Quality Control
Review Literature as Topic*

From MEDLINE®/PubMed®, a database of the U.S. National Library of Medicine

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