Systematic Reviews Made Easily Accessible – Part 1: Why are Systematic Reviews Indispensible?
DOI: 10.3238/zfa.2017.0351–0352german translation / full article
Summary: The mere abundance of medical publications, even within highly specialized areas, enforces a systematic method to synthesize the existing scientific evidence in a transparent and intelligent manner. A high-grade systematic review is an important element to master the difficult situation of handling information overload in medicine. Systematic reviews should be established before starting a clinical trial in order to especially address gaps in evidence. Furthermore, systematic reviews represent an essential component of every evidence-based practice guideline. Since several years an exponential increase in the publications of systematic reviews of questionable quality can be observed. Therefore, it seems to be essential to provide some generally understandable assistance to critically appraise such publications.