This guide was created in collaboration with Dr. Richard Kasuya.
Evidence-based medicine is the conscientious, explicit, and judicious use of current best evidence in making decisions about the care of individual patients. The practice of evidence based medicine means integrating individual clinical expertise with the best available external clinical evidence from systematic research. From Sackett DL et al. Evidence-Based Medicine: What it is and what it isn't BMJ. 1996 Jan 13; 312 (7023):71-2.
This is a basic introduction to evidence-based practice resources including books, guides, media, tools, and tutorials. The term evidence-based practice (EBP) is also used interchangeably with evidence-based medicine (EBM), since many health professions have adopted evidence-based principles into their practice.
Not all scientific studies are created equal! Study design can impact the strength and quality of evidence that a study holds. This 'Evidence Pyramid' depicts the levels of evidence provided by different types of studies and information. The wide base of the pyramid indicates that there are many editorials and expert opinions, but that they provide the weakest evidence to inform policy and decision-making. There are many fewer systematic reviews on a topic, but these represent the pinnacle of research evidence. Learn more about study designs, uses, and pros and cons at the University of Oxford Centre for Evidence-Based Medicine.
One of the most important parts to evidence based medicine is how your research questions are formulated. The PICO Framework can be used to structure and refine your research question. This can then be used to structure your search strategy and your process for identifying articles of interest.
Another important part to evidence based practice is being able to find the research you need to answer your question. This is a quick break down of how to break your research question into its searchable parts.