Evidence-based Medicine Series. Part 3. Appraising the evidence. Are the results valid and clinically important?
Many of us incorporate new research findings uncritically intoour knowledge bank. We may be inclined to accept whateverthe authors claim, especially on the subjects that arouseinterest or conclusions that conform to our beliefs. Suchpractice, although easy, is at best risky, as bad research isrampant, even in reputable journals. Our clinical practice mightchange according to these misleading findings, and so mightothers’ who believe us, at the perils of our patients.
In critical appraisal, we examine a piece of clinical evidencesystematically to determine its validity, clinical importance andapplicability to our patient. We look beyond the surface ofthe evidence, identify possible biases and decide for ourselveshow much we should believe its messages, and whether andhow we should use them in our clinical practice. (copied from article)
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