Enhancing the quality and transparency of systematic reviews
Systematic reviews (SR) have been important tools for determining the magnitude of an effect, with appropriate methodology, rigor and scientific quality. This epidemiologic design was developed to conduct an exhaustive, systematic and explicit assessment of the literature, based on a clearly research question, an explicit methodology, a critical appraisal using a variety of tools and a qualitative summary of the evidence. On the other hand, the meta-analysis (MA), is the statistical analysis used in the synthesis of the evidence at the end of a very well performed systematic review. It compares head to head interventions, however nowadays, we have another tool to perform indirect or mixed comparisons (Network meta-analysis). This new statistical tool evaluates the effectiveness when comparing different treatments with similar characteristics, which have not been directly compared in a study. Unlike the traditional meta-analysis, this new tool compares the results of different studies that have a point or a common intervention without a direct comparison.
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