Table 2

Methodological quality of the trials meeting the inclusion criteria

Hall [20]

Rossum [8]

Dalby [21]

Stuck [15]

Haastregt [23]

Yamada [22]

Hout [19]

Bouman [12]


Descriptive items


1 Were eligibility criteria clearly specified

+

+

+

+

+

+

+

+

2 Were index and control interventions explicitly described

+

+

+

+

+

+

+

+

3 Was there a description of whether adverse effect had or had not occurred

-

+

+

+

+

+

+

+

4 Was a short-term follow-up measurement (directly after the intervention) performed

+

+

+

-

+

+

+

+

5 Was a long-term follow-up measurement (6+ months after the intervention) performed

-

-

-

+

+

-

-

+


Statistical items


6 Was the sample size for each group described

+

+

+

+

+

+

+

+

7 Were point estimates and measures of variability presented

-

+

+

+

+

+

+

+


Validity items


8 Was treatment allocation concealed

+

+

+

+

+

?

+

+

9 Were groups similar at baseline regarding age, sex, outcome

-

+

-

-

+

+

+

+

10 Were co-interventions avoided or comparable

?

?

?

?

?

?

?

?

11 Was compliance acceptable in all groups

?

+

?

?

+

+

?

+

12 Was the outcome assessor blinded to the intervention

+

+

+

+

+

+

+

+

13 Was the withdrawal/dropout rate acceptable (max of 20% for short-term follow-up and 30% for long-term follow-up)

-

+

+

+

+

+

-

+

14 Was timing of the outcome assessment in both groups comparable

+

+

+

+

+

+

+

+

15 Did the analysis include an intention-to-treat analysis

?

+

+

+

+

+

+

+

Sum score validity items

+

3

7

5

5

7

6

5

7

?

3

1

2

2

1

2

2

1

-

2

0

1

1

0

0

1

0


Notes: scores +, criterion fulfilled; -, criterion not fulfilled; ?, data not provided or unclear (The results of the study by van Hout et al. have not been published yet; questions 3, 7, 9 and 13 were assessed from unpublished information; questions 10 and 11 could not be assessed.)

Bouman et al. BMC Health Services Research 2008 8:74   doi:10.1186/1472-6963-8-74

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