University of Southern California

Evidence Based Medicine Web Tutorial

Definition of Evidence-Based Medicine

Evidence based medicine is the conscientious, explicit, and judicious use of current best evidence in making decisions about the care of individual patients. The practice of evidence based medicine means integrating individual clinical expertise with the best available external clinical evidence from systematic research. (Sackett DL, Rosenberg WMC, Gray JAM, Haynes RB, Richardson WS. Evidence based medicine: what it is and what it isn't. BMJ 1996; 312: 71-2)

Five Steps of Evidence-Based Medicine

    1. Convert information needs into answerable questions
    2. Track down with maximum efficiency the best evidence with which to answer them
    3. Critically appraise that evidence for its validity and usefulness
    4. Apply the results of this appraisal in your practice
    5. Evaluate your performance

To convert your information needs into a focused question, see:

To track down the evidence, use the following sites that offer critically appraised information:

To track down evidence that should be appraised before using, try:

To help critically appraise an article or guideline, use the following guides:

To understand study design and levels of evidence, consult the following sites:

To locate more information about evidence-based medicine, see:

To use an online textbook for background information, see:

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Revised 2/17/11

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