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Introduction to Evidence-Based Practice (Original Text Tutorial): Selecting a Resource

This tutorial provides an intro to EBP and has been revised and updated at

Selecting the Resources

Selecting the Resources

Evidence-Based Practice requires that clinicians search the literature to find answers to their clinical questions. There are literally millions of published reports, journal articles, correspondence and studies available to clinicians. Choosing the best resource to search is an important decision. Large databases such as PubMed/MEDLINE will give you access to the primary literature. Secondary resources such as ACP Journal Club, Essential Evidence, FPIN Clinical Inquiries, and Clinical Evidence will provide you with an assessment of the original study. The Cochrane Library provides access to systematic reviews which help summarize the results from a number of studies. These are often called “pre-appraised” or EBP resources.

To quickly find an answer, we might first look at an appraised resource, such as ACP Journal ClubACP Journal Club’s general purpose is to select from the biomedical literature articles that report original studies and systematic reviews that warrant immediate attention by physicians attempting to keep pace with important advances in internal medicine. These articles are summarized in value-added abstracts and commented on by clinical experts.  Studies included in this small database are relevant, newsworthy and critically appraised for study methodology.

A search of diabetes and bariatric surgery identified this citation: Mingrone G, Panunzi S, De Gaetano A, et al. Bariatric surgery versus conventional medical therapy for type 2 diabetes. N Engl J Med. 2012;366:1577-85.  This trial found that for severely obese patients with type 2 diabetes, bariatric surgery resulted in reduced levels of HbA1c, glucose and BMI than did medical therapy.

If you do not have access to ACP Journal Club or other EBP resources you will need to do the search in PubMed or MEDLINE.  PubMed/MEDLINE is a very large database with over 22 million citations.  You will need your focused question and search strategy for this database.

EBP Resources:

Article Databases:

 E-Books and Libraries:

 Meta / Cross Search Engines: