Introduction to critical reading of articles: Study design and biases.

Radiologia

PubMedID: 25458123

García Villar C. Introduction to critical reading of articles: Study design and biases. Radiologia. 2014;.
The critical evaluation of an article enables professionals to make good use of the new information and therefore has direct repercussions for the benefit of our patients. Before undertaking a detailed critical reading of the chosen article, we need to consider whether the study used the most appropriate design for the question it aimed to answer (i.e., whether the level of evidence is adequate). To do this, we need to know how to classify studies in function of their design (descriptive or analytical; prospective or retrospective; cross-sectional or longitudinal) as well as their correlation with the levels of evidence. In critical reading it is also important to know the main systematic errors or biases that can affect a study. Biases can appear in any phase of a study; they can affect the sample, the development of the study, or the measurement of the results.