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Res Synth Methods. 2016 Sep;7(3):236-63. doi: 10.1002/jrsm.1195. Epub 2016 Jan 11.

GetReal in network meta-analysis: a review of the methodology.

Author information

1
Department of Hygiene and Epidemiology, University of Ioannina School of Medicine, Ioannina, Greece. oremiou@gmail.com.
2
Julius Center for Health Sciences and Primary Care, University Medical Center Utrecht, Utrecht, The Netherlands.
3
The Dutch Cochrane Centre, Julius Center for Health Sciences and Primary Care, University Medical Center Utrecht, Utrecht, The Netherlands.
4
Department of Epidemiology, University of Groningen, University Medical Center Groningen, Groningen, The Netherlands.
5
Institute of Social and Preventive Medicine, University of Bern, Bern, Switzerland.
6
CTU Bern, Department of Clinical Research, University of Bern, Bern, Switzerland.
7
F. Hoffmann-La Roche AG, Basel, Switzerland.
8
Department of Hygiene and Epidemiology, University of Ioannina School of Medicine, Ioannina, Greece.

Abstract

Pairwise meta-analysis is an established statistical tool for synthesizing evidence from multiple trials, but it is informative only about the relative efficacy of two specific interventions. The usefulness of pairwise meta-analysis is thus limited in real-life medical practice, where many competing interventions may be available for a certain condition and studies informing some of the pairwise comparisons may be lacking. This commonly encountered scenario has led to the development of network meta-analysis (NMA). In the last decade, several applications, methodological developments, and empirical studies in NMA have been published, and the area is thriving as its relevance to public health is increasingly recognized. This article presents a review of the relevant literature on NMA methodology aiming to pinpoint the developments that have appeared in the field.

KEYWORDS:

comparing multiple interventions; indirect treatment comparison; mixed-treatment comparison; multiple-treatment meta-analysis

PMID:
26754852
DOI:
10.1002/jrsm.1195
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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