Quality Assessment of Systematic Reviews on Periodontal Regeneration in Humans
Background: Systematic reviews represent the highest form of evidence in the current hierarchy of evidence-based dentistry. Critical analysis of published systematic reviews may help to analyze their strengths and weaknesses and to identify areas that need future improvement. The aim of this overview was to determine and compare the quality of systematic reviews published in the field of periodontal regeneration using established checklists such as the Assessment of Multiple Systematic Reviews (AMSTAR) guidelines. Methods: A systematic search was conducted to retrieve reviews on periodontal regeneration in humans. A total of 14 systematic reviews were selected using a set of inclusion and exclusion criteria. Two independent reviewers appraised the quality of the selected reviews using AMSTAR guidelines. Each article was given an AMSTAR total score, based on the number of AMSTAR criteria that were fulfilled. The quality of included reviews was further assessed using a checklist proposed by Glenny and collaborators in 2003. Results: Only one of the selected systematic reviews satisfied all the AMSTAR guidelines, while on the other end, two reviews satisfied just 2 of the 11 items. This study shows that published systematic reviews on periodontal regeneration exhibit significant structural and methodological variability. Quality assessment using the additional checklist further confirmed the variability in the way systematic reviews were conducted and/or reported. Conclusion: Consideration of guidelines for quality assessment, such as AMSTAR, when designing and conducting systematic reviews may increase the validity and clinical applicability of future reviews.
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