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Current methods for development of rapid reviews about diagnostic tests: an international survey

Arevalo-Rodriguez, Ingrid, Steingart, Karen, Tricco, Andrea C., Nussbaumer-Streit, Barbara, Kaunelis, David, Alonso-Coello, Pablo, Baxter, Susan, Bossuyt, Patrick M., Emparanza, José Ignacio and Zamora, Javier (2020) 'Current methods for development of rapid reviews about diagnostic tests: an international survey'. BMC Medical Research Methodology, Vol 20, Issue 115.

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Rapid reviews (RRs) have emerged as an efficient alternative to time-consuming systematic reviews—they can help meet the demand for accelerated evidence synthesis to inform decision-making in healthcare. The synthesis of diagnostic evidence has important methodological challenges. Here, we performed an international survey to identify the current practice of producing RRs for diagnostic tests.
We developed and administered an online survey inviting institutions that perform RRs of diagnostic tests from all over the world.
All participants (N = 25) reported the implementation of one or more methods to define the scope of the RR; however, only one strategy (defining a structured question) was used by ≥90% of participants. All participants used at least one methodological shortcut including the use of a previous review as a starting point (92%) and the use of limits on the search (96%). Parallelization and automation of review tasks were not extensively used (48 and 20%, respectively).
Our survey indicates a greater use of shortcuts and limits for conducting diagnostic test RRs versus the results of a recent scoping review analyzing published RRs. Several shortcuts are used without knowing how their implementation affects the results of the evidence synthesis in the setting of diagnostic test reviews. Thus, a structured evaluation of the challenges and implications of the adoption of these RR methods is warranted.

Item Type: Article
Subjects: QY Clinical Pathology > QY 4 General works
W General Medicine. Health Professions > W 20.5 Biomedical research
WA Public Health > Statistics. Surveys > WA 950 Theory or methods of medical statistics. Epidemiologic methods
Faculty: Department: Clinical Sciences & International Health > Clinical Sciences Department
Digital Object Identifer (DOI):
Depositing User: Stacy Murtagh
Date Deposited: 22 May 2020 08:34
Last Modified: 22 May 2020 08:34


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