Should Archimedes be exiled?

Well … it never happened in antiquity. ¬†Archimedes got killed by an invading soldier.

But back to Archi in the ADC – should we abandon this column as the articles are not ‘proper’ systematic reviews, or is a good short-cut review nearly as good as a 12-month long ‘full’ review?

This is, as you would no doubt guess, something that there have been a number of publications about! A recent email discussion on the evidence-based-health listserve on the issue was summarised by Jon Brassey of tripdatabase (of which Archi has repeatedly spoken favourably).

The bottom line is that most rapid reviews are more limited, have less transparent methodologies, are uneven in quality and yet come up with qualitatively the same answer as proper big reviews. So until we have even better evidence comparing the short-cut and the ‘full’ systematic reviews and shows us that the short-cuts are dead-ends, Archi’s staying put for a while longer.


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