Evidence-Based Medicine: Review and Practice

Practice Your Skills

Select words from the PICO concepts to guide the development of a PubMed search. Remember:

  • Start with key concepts. You do not need to use all of the concepts or all the words.
  • Gender and specific age limits are usually added after a preliminary search unless they are central to the clinical question.
  • Consider alternate word endings, especially for key concepts.
  • Consider synonyms and acronyms.
  • Use an OR to combine alternate word endings and enclose the set of similar words in parentheses.

Synonyms are grouped together with OR in between words and parentheses around the outside of the set.  Sets are connected with AND in between

Medicine

For an adult male, does a lower sodium diet or lower reduced salt intake reduce hypertension?

Question Search Terms
Adult Male With Hypertension ("Adult"[Mesh] OR adult*) AND ("Male"[Mesh] OR male*)
  AND
Hypertension

("Hypertension"[Mesh] OR hypertens* OR "high blood pressure")

  AND
Salt Intake

("Sodium, Dietary"[Mesh] OR salt OR "sodium chloride")

  AND
Study design filters Systematic Review of RCTs > individual RCTs > cohort studies

 

Preliminary search:
("Adult"[Mesh] OR adult*) AND ("Male"[Mesh] OR male*) AND ("Hypertension"[Mesh] OR hypertens* OR "high blood pressure") AND ("Sodium, Dietary"[Mesh] OR salt OR "sodium chloride")

Anesthesiology & Surgery

What effect does preoperative carbohydrate treatment, compared with placebo or preoperative fasting, have on postoperative recovery in adult patients undergoing surgery?

Question Search Terms
Adult patient undergoing surgery No search terms. The intervention includes the word preoperative and we do not need to duplicate this concept by also searching surgery.
  AND
Preoperative carbohydrate

("Preoperative Period"[Mesh] OR "Preoperative Care"[Mesh] OR Preoperative OR Pre-operative) AND ("Dietary Carbohydrates"[Mesh] OR Carbohydrate OR Carbohydrates)

  AND
Placebo OR preoperative fasting

No search terms. We are open to no comparison.
Note: Many clinical questions do not include a specific comparison.

  AND
Postoperative recovery ("Postoperative Period"[Mesh] OR "Postoperative Care"[Mesh] OR postoperative OR "post-operative" OR recovery)
Study design filters Systematic Review of RCTs > individual RCTs > cohort studies

 

Preliminary search:
("Preoperative Period"[Mesh] OR "Preoperative Care"[Mesh] OR preoperative OR "pre-operative") AND ("Dietary Carbohydrates"[Mesh] OR Carbohydrate OR Carbohydrates) AND ("Postoperative Period"[Mesh] OR "Postoperative Care"[Mesh] OR postoperative OR "post-operative" OR recovery)

OB-GYN

For a 33 year old pregnant female in her second trimester, what is the evidence available to support the choice between laparoscopic appendectomy or open appendectomy with the best clinical outcome?

Question Search Terms
Pregnant, Second Trimester ("Pregnancy"[Mesh] OR "Pregnancy Complications"[Mesh] OR pregnancy OR pregnant OR "pregnancy complications")
  AND
Laparoscopy

("Laparoscopy"[Mesh] OR laparoscopy OR laparoscopic)

  AND
Open Appendectomy

("Appendectomy"[Mesh] OR "Appendicitis"[Mesh] OR appendectomy OR appendicitis)

  AND
Study design filters Systematic Review of RCTs > individual RCTs > cohort studies

 

Preliminary search:
("Pregnancy"[Mesh] OR "Pregnancy Complications"[Mesh] OR pregnancy OR pregnant OR "pregnancy complications") AND ("Laparoscopy"[Mesh] OR laparoscopy OR laparoscopic) AND ("Appendectomy"[Mesh] OR "Appendicitis"[Mesh] OR appendectomy OR appendicitis)

Pediatrics

For a child/pediatric patient, is ibuprofen as effective as morphine during the post-operative/postfracture period?

Question Search Terms
Pediatric Patient aged 2-12 ("Child"[Mesh] OR child OR pediatric OR children)
  AND
postoperative/postfracture period

("Surgical Procedures, Operative"[Mesh] OR "Fractures, Bone"[Mesh] OR surgery OR surgical OR fracture OR fractures)

  AND
pain

("Pain, Postoperative"[Mesh] OR pain OR "pain management")

  AND
ibuprofen ("Analgesics, Non-Narcotic"[Mesh] OR "Ibuprofen"[Mesh] OR ibuprofen)
  AND
morphine ("Analgesics, Opioid"[Mesh] OR "Morphine"[Mesh] OR morphine)
  AND
Study design filters Systematic Review of RCTs > individual RCTs > cohort studies

 

Preliminary search:

("Child"[Mesh] OR child OR pediatric OR children) AND ("Surgical Procedures, Operative"[Mesh] OR "Fractures, Bone"[Mesh] OR surgery OR surgical OR fracture OR fractures) AND ("Pain, Postoperative"[Mesh] OR pain OR "pain management") AND ("Analgesics, Non-Narcotic"[Mesh] OR "Ibuprofen"[Mesh] OR ibuprofen) AND ("Analgesics, Opioid"[Mesh] OR "Morphine"[Mesh] OR morphine)