General Information from the Cochrane Website
Getting involved as a Review Author: If you have expertise in some aspect of healthcare, consider joining the relevant Cochrane Review Group. If there is not yet a group which covers your specialty, register your interest in being part of a new group. Being part of a Cochrane review group provides the support, resources and training to tackle a systematic review, and an international audience when your work is published in The Cochrane Library.
- Cochrane Handbook for Systematic Reviews of Interventions - the official guide to producing Cochrane reviews
- RevMan web page - documentation and support for software for preparing and maintaining Cochrane reviews
- GRADEpro - (GRADEprofiler) is the software used to create Summary of Findings (SoF) tables in Cochrane systematic reviews
- Cochrane Style Resource - compare your Cochrane Review against the official style guide
- Using Individual Patient Data - Power Point slides
- Re-publishing of reviews - explanation of procedures and permission form if you wish to re-publish your review in another scientific journal
- Reporting Guidelines
CONSORT - reporting of RCTs
PRISMA (formerly QUOROM) [PDF document] - preferred reporting items for systematic reviews and meta-analyses
STROBE - reporting of observational studies in epidemiology
EQUATOR Network - collection of reporting guidelines
- Cochrane Diagnostic Test Accuracy Group
- Submission deadlines - includes information on deadlines for Copy Edit Support and module/CENTRAL submissions, as well as publication dates for The Cochrane Library
Training - face-to-face
Training - online
- Open Learning Materials - learn the steps in convenient online modules which supplement the Cochrane Reviewers' Handbook in helping you gain skills and complete your review.
Training resources provided by other organizations:
- Undertaking Systematic Reviews of Research on Effectiveness - an extensive guide by the NHS Centre for Reviews & Dissemination
Methods used in reviews
Access to specialised register by reviewers
The CHMG specialised register is regularly updated. Searching in the specialised register can be arranged by contacting the Trial Search Coordinator.
The register is also available for searching on the Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials (CENTRAL) in the Cochrane Library by using the term SR-HAEMATOL.
Additional search strategies
Each review author should contact the Trials Search Coordinator for assistance in developing a search strategy for their review (firstname.lastname@example.org).
Reviewers are also advised to:
1. Search specialised databases, conference proceedings and bibliographies of relevant papers in their topic area
2. Contact authors of trials and/or reviews relevant to their review topic to request further information.
3. Contact pharmaceutical industries to request information on data from commercial trials
4. Search for ongoing trials via http://www.controlled-trials.com/mrct/.
Selection of studies should be carried according to the Cochrane Handbook for Systematic Reviews of Interventions
Assessment of methodological quality
To assess quality and risk of bias, a questionnaire containing the items as suggested in the Cochrane Handbook for Systematic Reviews of Interventions should be used.
Data should be collected according to the Cochrane Handbook for Systematic Reviews of Interventions. It is strongly recommended that more than one person extract data from every report to minimize errors.
Meta-analytic techniques are recommended when results from more than one trial are available and it is appropriate to combine them. Statistical methods used to combine studies should be stated in the protocol.
It is suggested that one review author enters the data into RevMan and another person checks the data carefully.
For more information see Cochrane Handbook for Systematic Reviews of Interventions.
Reporting of reviews
Reviews will comment on the strength of the results in terms of the size of the treatment effect and the degree of confidence that can be placed in this estimate. The results of findings will be discussed, if necessary using non-RCT data to provide an adequate description of the clinical context. The discussion and conclusion section should be limited to matters of fact and not opinion. Comments on the applicability of the results should be limited, as the interpretation will vary for different readers. It is important, however, to comment on outcomes that were not measured in the primary studies. Where possible, review authors will include data on the potential harms and benefits of the interventions as costs if available.