Table 2

Quality assessment for included studies

Case series
RefStudy123456789Overall ratingLevel of evidence
4Murphy et al4YYNYYYYYGood4
12Kostogloudis et al12YYNYYYYYGood4
18Linder et al18NYYYYYYYGood4
19Linder et al19NYYYYYYYGood4
25Boyar and Galiczewski25YYNYYYYYGood4
27Myers et al17YYYYYYYYGood4
30Onesti et al30NYNYYYYYGood4
34Yan et al34YYNYYYYYGood4
10Falcone et al10YYNYYNYYFair4
13Sung and Lee13YYNYYNYYFair4
23Weiss et al23NYYYYNYYFair4
29Cho et al29YYNYYNYYFair4
31Firat et al31YYNYYNYYFair4
33Sivrioglu and Irkoren33YYNYYNYYFair4
11Ghanem et al11YYNYNNYYPoor4
14Odom et al14YYNYNYNYPoor4
15Compaña et al15NNNYNNYPoor4
16Harris et al16NNYYNYPoor4
17Andrés et al17YNYNYYYPoor4
20Upton et al20YNYYYNYYPoor4
21Casanova et al21YYNYYNNYPoor4
22von Heimburg and Pallua22NNYNYNYYPoor4
26Yan et al26YNYYNYYYPoor4
28Cochran et al28YNNYYNNNPoor4
32Ching et al32YYYYYNNYPoor4
Before-and-after study
RefStudy123456789101112Overall ratingLevel of evidence
YesNoN/A, Not recorded or cannot determine
  • Case series questions

  • (1) Was the study question or objective clearly stated?

  • (2) Was the study population clearly and fully described, including a case definition?

  • (3) Were the cases consecutive?

  • (4) Were the subjects comparable?

  • (5) Was the intervention clearly described?

  • (6) Were the outcome measures clearly defined, valid, reliable and implemented consistently across all study participants?

  • (7) Was the length of follow-upadequate?

  • (8) Were the statistical methods well described?

  • (9) Were the results well described?

  • Before-and-after study questions

  • (1) Was the study question or objective clearly stated?

  • (2) Were eligibility/selection criteria for the study population prespecified and clearly described?

  • (3) Were the participants in the study representative of those who would be eligible for the test/service/intervention in the general or clinical population of interest?

  • (4) Were all eligible participants who met the prespecified entry criteria enrolled?

  • (5) Was the sample size sufficiently large to provide confidence in the findings?

  • (6) Was the test/service/intervention clearly described and delivered consistently across the study population?

  • (7) Were the outcome measures prespecified, clearly defined, valid, reliable and assessed consistently across all study participants?

  • (8) Were the people assessing the outcomes blinded to the participants’ exposures/interventions?

  • (9) Was the loss to follow-up after baseline 20% or less? Were those lost to follow-up accounted for in the analysis?

  • (10) Did the statistical methods examine changes in outcome measures from before to after the intervention? Were statistical tests done that provided p-values for the pre-to-post changes?

  • (11) Were outcome measures of interest taken multiple times before the intervention and multiple times after the intervention (ie, did they use an interrupted time-series design)?

  • (12) If the intervention was conducted at a group level (eg, a whole hospital, a community) did the statistical analysis take into account the use of individual-level data to determine effects at the group level?