Review and recommendations on the current practice of meta-analyses: a guide to appraise the evidence

EuroIntervention 2014;9:1013-1020.

Ruben L.J. Osnabrugge
Ruben L. Osnabrugge1, MSc; Davide Capodanno2, MD, PhD; Paul Cummins3; A. Pieter Kappetein1, MD, PhD; Patrick W. Serruys4*, MD, PhD
1. Department of Cardio-Thoracic Surgery, Thoraxcenter, Erasmus MC, Rotterdam, The Netherlands; 2. Ferrarotto Hospital, Catania, Italy; 3. EuroIntervention, Rotterdam, The Netherlands; 4. Department of Interventional Cardiology, Thor
Systematic reviews and meta-analyses identify, appraise and synthesise all evidence on a specific research question. They are considered the highest level of evidence, help physicians stay up to date and enable them to make informed clinical decisions1. It is therefore not surprising that this study design has become increasingly popular2,3.

Inevitably, the phenomenon of duplicate meta-analyses is also increasingly common. A recent study showed that more than half of meta-analyses have at least one overlapping meta-analysis, and some topics had up to 13 overlapping meta-analyses2. While some degree of duplication is warranted in research, large numbers of overlapping meta-analyses seem ...

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