Table 1

Population, exposure, comparator, exposure and study design framework for eligible studies

PECOS strategyInclusion criteriaExclusion criteria
P - PopulationAdult (18+) cancer patients diagnosed with breast, lung, prostate, cervical or colorectal cancerPatients with recurrent cancer, patients who cannot or choose not to undergo cancer treatment, studies that do not separate patients by first treatment modality (ie, studies that do not indicate which treatment occurred first)
E - ExposureStudies must have evaluated at least one factor in relation to treatment delayWe have no plans to exclude any factors at this time
C - ComparisonN/AN/A
O - OutcomeQuantitative studies must have reported the outcome of treatment delay as OR, risk ratio, relative risk or beta-coefficient for each individual exposureWe have no exclusion criteria based on outcome at this time
S - Study designRetrospective cohort studies, prospective cohort studies, cross-sectional studies, case–control studies, qualitative studies and mixed-methods studiesReviews, randomised controlled trials, case reports and case series
  • N/A, not applicable.