ESSAYS

About Fair Tests

Cite as: The James Lind Library About Fair Tests (http://www.jameslindlibrary.org/essays/about-fair-tests/)


The explanatory essays in The James Lind Library have been written to promote wider understanding of why fair tests of treatments are needed, and what they have come to consist of. You can access each essay by clicking on the link below. If you want to download all of the essays, so that they can be printed out together for reading off screen, click here.

The text in these essays may be copied and used for non-commercial purposes on condition that explicit acknowledgement is made to The James Lind Library (www.jameslindlibrary.org).

Fair tests of treatments

1.0 Introduction to JLL Explanatory Essays

1.1 Why treatment uncertainties should be addressed

1.2 Why treatment comparisons are essential

1.3 Why treatment comparisons must be fair

Biases

2.0 Avoiding biased treatment comparisons

2.1 Why comparisons must address genuine uncertainties

2.2 The need to compare like-with-like in treatment comparisons

2.3 Why avoiding differences between treatments allocated and treatments received is important

2.4 The need to avoid differences in the way treatment outcomes are assessed

2.5 Bias introduced after looking at study results

2.6 Reducing biases in judging unanticipated possible treatment effects

2.7 Dealing with biased reporting of the available evidence

2.8 Avoiding biased selection from the available evidence

2.9 Recognizing researcher/sponsor biases and fraud

The play of chance

3.0 Taking account of the play of chance

3.1 Recording and interpreting numbers in testing treatments

3.2 Quantifying uncertainty in treatment comparisons

3.3 Reducing the play of chance using meta-analysis

Bringing it all together for the benefit of patients and the public

4.0 Bringing it all together for the benefit of patients and the public

4.1 Improving reports of research

4.2 Preparing and maintaining systematic reviews of all the relevant evidence

4.3 Using the results of research