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Schwerpunktreihe / Special Section: “Living systematic reviews and living guideline recommendations to manage dynamically evolving evidence in health care”|Articles in Press

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From standard systematic reviews to living systematic reviews

  • Claudia Breuer
    Affiliations
    Cochrane Germany, Cochrane Germany Foundation, Freiburg, Germany

    Institute for Evidence in Medicine, Medical Center - University of Freiburg, Faculty of Medicine, Freiburg, Germany
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  • Jörg J. Meerpohl
    Affiliations
    Cochrane Germany, Cochrane Germany Foundation, Freiburg, Germany

    Institute for Evidence in Medicine, Medical Center - University of Freiburg, Faculty of Medicine, Freiburg, Germany
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  • Waldemar Siemens
    Correspondence
    Corresponding author. Waldemar Siemens. Cochrane Deutschland Stiftung (CDS), Berliner Allee 2, 79110 Freiburg, Deutschland.
    Affiliations
    Cochrane Germany, Cochrane Germany Foundation, Freiburg, Germany

    Institute for Evidence in Medicine, Medical Center - University of Freiburg, Faculty of Medicine, Freiburg, Germany
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Published:January 24, 2023DOI:https://doi.org/10.1016/j.zefq.2022.11.007

      Abstract

      Systematic reviews (SRs) have become a central tool for evidence-based health care over the last 30 years. The number of SRs being published has increased steadily. However, concerns have been raised regarding the duplication of work, methodological flaws and the currency of many systematic reviews, also in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic. Living systematic reviews (LSRs) offer a new approach to updating systematic reviews, particularly in high-priority research fields that face the challenge of dynamically evolving and sometimes uncertain evidence. Continual updates serve to ensure that LSRs remain current and methodologically rigorous. As a new element of the evidence ecosystem, LSRs can inform living guidelines and recommendations, user-adapted formats, decisions at the patient and system level as well as gaps in primary research.

      Zusammenfassung

      Systematische Reviews sind seit mehr als 30 Jahren ein zentrales Instrument in der evidenzbasierten Gesundheitsversorgung. Die Anzahl der veröffentlichten Arbeiten ist in dieser Zeit stetig gestiegen. Allerdings gibt es aufgrund von thematischen Überschneidungen und Duplikaten, fraglicher Qualität und mangelnder Aktualität Kritik an vielen systematischen Reviews, auch im Kontext der COVID-19-Pandemie. Sogenannte lebende Evidenzsynthesen sind ein neuerer Ansatz, um systematische Reviews auf dem aktuellen Stand der Forschung zu halten. Sie eignen sich für Fragestellungen, zu denen aktuell viele Studien durchgeführt werden, die hohe Priorität haben und deren Ergebnisse noch in erheblichem Maße unsicher sind. Ziel dieses Ansatzes ist es, durch kontinuierliche Sichtung und Einarbeitung neuer Evidenz Aktualität sowie methodische Qualität zu erreichen. Lebende Evidenzsynthesen können als neues Element eines systematisierten Evidenz-Ökosystems die Grundlage für lebende Leitlinien und Empfehlungen, zielgruppengerechte Informationsangebote, Entscheidungen auf Patienten- und Systemebene sowie für die Identifizierung von Evidenzlücken in der Primärforschung sein.

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