Evidence Synthesis Research

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Statistical Methods for Meta-analyses of Sensitivity and Specificity of Medical Tests

Medical tests are used for determining whether disease is present for the purposes of diagnosis, screening, assessing the extent of disease, predicting the future course of disease, and guiding treatment selection. In most cases, test results are used to classify patients into two exclusive groups, “test positive” and “test negative.” Test performance can then be expressed as the ability to identify individuals with disease as “test positives” – called sensitivity – and individuals with no disease as “test negatives” – called specificity. Individual studies of test performance tend to be small and are often conducted in diverse settings. Systematic reviews of test studies offer a natural framework for evidence synthesis. However, there are several methods by which these reviews can be guided. The purpose of this study, published in Journal of Clinical Epidemiology and led by Issa Dahabreh, assistant professor in the department of health services, policy and practice, was to compare alternative meta-analysis methods for sensitivity and specificity. READ MORE

Recommendations for the Conduct and Reporting of Modeling and Simulation Studies based on a Systematic Review

 The purpose of this paper, published in Annals of Internal Medicine and led by Issa Dahabreh, assistant professor of health services, policy and practice, and member of the Center for Evidence-based Medicine, was to provide recommendations for the conduct and reporting of modeling and simulation studies based on a systematic review of the published literature, a survey of websites of international health technology assessment organizations, and input from experts and other stakeholders. read more