Another year has flown by at the Centre for Evidence-Based Medicine. The last 12 months have been jam-packed with successful teaching, conferences, collaborations, campaigning and research.
Centre members have published a number of systematic reviews and meta-analyses including the epic, headline hitting tamiflu work; Igho’s analyses of the effects of green tea and chorionic acid on blood pressure; and an update on the evidence for using vitamin K to improve anticoagulation control. A celebratory evidence-based medicine themed bake is definitely called for.
They say a picture is worth a thousand words and, when reading a systematic review, your eye is often drawn to the forest plot first: This graphic summarises the effect sizes reported by individual studies included in the review. It also shows an estimate of the pooled effect having combined the results of all studies together in the statistical equivalent of giving the data a good whisk.
And here’s my version created with a black forest gateau – a firm festive favourite. Christmas is also the time of year for naff puns, so the “Black Forest-Plot Gateau” is born!
Here’s a real life example taken from the green tea review: