Semi-automatic the manual literature search for systematic reviews increases efficiency

Department for Evidence-based Medicine and Clinical Epidemiology, Danube University Krems, Krems, Austria.
Health Information & Libraries Journal (Impact Factor: 0.89). 03/2010; 27(1):22-7. DOI: 10.1111/j.1471-1842.2009.00865.x
Source: PubMed


To minimise retrieval bias, manual literature searches are a key part of the search process of any systematic review. Considering the need to have accurate information, valid results of the manual literature search are essential to ensure scientific standards; likewise efficient approaches that minimise the amount of personnel time required to conduct a manual literature search are of great interest.
The objective of this project was to determine the validity and efficiency of a new manual search method that utilises the scopus database.
We used the traditional manual search approach as the gold standard to determine the validity and efficiency of the proposed scopus method. Outcome measures included completeness of article detection and personnel time involved. Using both methods independently, we compared the results based on accuracy of the results, validity and time spent conducting the search, efficiency.
Regarding accuracy, the scopus method identified the same studies as the traditional approach indicating its validity. In terms of efficiency, using scopus led to a time saving of 62.5% compared with the traditional approach (3 h versus 8 h).
The scopus method can significantly improve the efficiency of manual searches and thus of systematic reviews.

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Available from: Gerald Gartlehner, Jan 09, 2015
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    • "However, this is also an important strategy for limiting the study's focus. Additionally, the use of manual or hand searches in the list of references in the reviews by Kay (2006), Enochsson and Rizza (2009), and Tondeur et al. (2012) can be considered time consuming, inefficient, and a unsystematic search technique, which offers little transparency (Chapman et al., 2010). "
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    ABSTRACT: This article is a literature review of online peer-reviewed empirical studies from 2000 to 2013 regarding the development of digital competence of student teachers in teacher education qualified to teach in the secondary school grade level. The purpose of the review is to showcase and establish knowledge about empirical research on ICT-training in teacher education, and contribute with an overview of approaches for researchers, teacher educators, and policymakers on how teacher education develop student teachers’ digital competence for the secondary school grade level. A total of 42 studies met the inclusion criteria and were included in the review. Based on a thematic analysis of the studies, including coding and categorization strategies, eight approaches were identified: collaboration, metacognition, blending, modeling, authentic learning, student-active learning, assessment, and bridging theory/practice gap. The approaches consider ways that teacher education programs promote student teachers’ digital competence, and educate them in professionally using ICT for their future use in school and classroom teaching in secondary education.
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    • "Searches were conducted periodically throughout the preparation of the review to ensure that new publications were identified as they entered the open literature. Furthermore, manual searches were conducted to pursue references of references if warranted (Chapman et al., 2009). Only feeding studies and not studies using gavage or other routes of administration were considered. "
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    ABSTRACT: There is disagreement internationally across major regulatory jurisdictions on the relevance and utility of whole food (WF) toxicity studies on GM crops, with no harmonization of data or regulatory requirements. The scientific value, and therefore animal ethics, of WF studies on GM crops is a matter addressable from the wealth of data available on commercialized GM crops and WF studies on irradiated foods. We reviewed available GM crop WF studies and considered the extent to which they add to the information from agronomic and compositional analyses. No WF toxicity study was identified that convincingly demonstrated toxicological concern or that called into question the adequacy, sufficiency, and reliability of safety assessments based on crop molecular characterization, transgene source, agronomic characteristics, and/or compositional analysis of the GM crop and its near-isogenic line. Predictions of safety based on crop genetics and compositional analyses have provided complete concordance with the results of well-conducted animal testing. However, this concordance is primarily due to the improbability of de novo generation of toxic substances in crop plants using genetic engineering practices and due to the weakness of WF toxicity studies in general. Thus, based on the comparative robustness and reliability of compositional and agronomic considerations and on the absence of any scientific basis for a significant potential for de novo generation of toxicologically significant compositional alterations as a sole result of transgene insertion, the conclusion of this review is that WF animal toxicity studies are unnecessary and scientifically unjustifiable.
    Critical Reviews in Toxicology 11/2013; 43(S2):1-24. DOI:10.3109/10408444.2013.842955 · 5.10 Impact Factor
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    • "This is due to incomplete or absent electronic databases before 1990 and to a more precise manual search not based on keyword search but on studies abstracts and full-text articles. Used in combination, these methods help to ensure that all relevant literature is accounted for, therefore minimizing retrieval bias [57]. "
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    ABSTRACT: Background We systematically reviewed etiological factors of Kienböck’s disease (osteonecrosis of the lunate) discussed in the literature in order to examine the justification for including Kienböck’s disease (KD) in the European Listing of Occupational Diseases. Methods We searched the Ovid/Medline and the Cochrane Library for articles discussing the etiology of osteonecrosis of the lunate published since the first description of KD in 1910 and up until July 2012 in English, French or German. Literature was classified by the level of evidence presented, the etiopathological hypothesis discussed, and the author's conclusion about the role of the etiopathological hypothesis. The causal relationship between KD and hand-arm vibration was elucidated by the Bradford Hill criteria. Results A total of 220 references was found. Of the included 152 articles, 140 (92%) reached the evidence level IV (case series). The four most frequently discussed factors were negative ulnar variance (n=72; 47%), primary arterial ischemia of the lunate (n=63; 41%), trauma (n=63; 41%) and hand-arm vibration (n=53; 35%). The quality of the cohort studies on hand-arm vibration did not permit a meta-analysis to evaluate the strength of an association to KD. Evidence for the lack of consistency, plausibility and coherence of the 4 most frequently discussed etiopathologies was found. No evidence was found to support any of the nine Bradford Hill criteria for a causal relationship between KD and hand-arm vibration. Conclusions A systematic review of 220 articles on the etiopathology of KD and the application of the Bradford Hill criteria does not provide sufficient scientific evidence to confirm or refute a causal relationship between KD and hand-arm vibration. This currently suggests that, KD does not comply with the criteria of the International Labour Organization determining occupational diseases. However, research with a higher level of evidence is required to further determine if hand-arm vibration is a risk factor for KD.
    BMC Musculoskeletal Disorders 11/2012; 13(1):225. DOI:10.1186/1471-2474-13-225 · 1.72 Impact Factor
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