Evaluating heterogeneity in cumulative meta-analyses

Villanueva, Elmer V and Zavarsek, Silva 2004, Evaluating heterogeneity in cumulative meta-analyses, BMC medical research methodology, vol. 4, pp. 1-8, doi: 10.1186/1471-2288-4-18.

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Title Evaluating heterogeneity in cumulative meta-analyses
Author(s) Villanueva, Elmer V
Zavarsek, SilvaORCID iD for Zavarsek, Silva orcid.org/0000-0002-7898-1406
Journal name BMC medical research methodology
Volume number 4
Article ID 18
Start page 1
End page 8
Total pages 8
Publisher BioMed Central
Place of publication London, Eng.
Publication date 2004-07-13
ISSN 1471-2288
Keyword(s) Nicotine
Smoking Cessation
Nicotine Replacement Therapy
Smoking Cessation Intervention
Summary BACKGROUND: Recently developed measures such as I2 and H allow the evaluation of the impact of heterogeneity in conventional meta-analyses. There has been no examination of the development of heterogeneity in the context of a cumulative meta-analysis. METHODS: Cumulative meta-analyses of five smoking cessation interventions (clonidine, nicotine replacement therapy using gum and patch, physician advice and acupuncture) were used to calculate I2 and H. These values were plotted by year of publication, control event rate and sample size to trace the development of heterogeneity over these covariates. RESULTS: The cumulative evaluation of heterogeneity varied according to the measure of heterogeneity used and the basis of cumulation. Plots produced from the calculations revealed areas of heterogeneity useful in the consideration of potential sources for further study. CONCLUSION: The examination of heterogeneity in conjunction with summary effect estimates in a cumulative meta-analysis offered valuable insight into the evolution of variation. Such information is not available in the context of conventional meta-analysis and has the potential to lead to the development of a richer picture of the effectiveness of interventions.
Language eng
DOI 10.1186/1471-2288-4-18
Field of Research 1117 Public Health and Health Services
HERDC Research category C1.1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal
Copyright notice ©2004, Villanueva and Zavarsek
Persistent URL http://hdl.handle.net/10536/DRO/DU:30121318

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