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Year : 2020  |  Volume : 3  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 545-551

Critical appraisal of a clinical research paper: What one needs to know

Department of Radiation Oncology, Tata Memorial Centre, Homi Bhabha National Institute, Mumbai, Maharashtra, India

Correspondence Address:
Tejpal Gupta
ACTREC, Tata Memorial Centre, Homi Bhabha National Institute, Kharghar, Navi Mumbai - 410 210, Maharashtra
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/CRST.CRST_211_20

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In the present era of evidence-based medicine (EBM), integrating best research evidence into the clinical practice necessitates developing skills to critically evaluate and analyze the scientific literature. Critical appraisal is the process of systematically examining research evidence to assess its validity, results, and relevance to inform clinical decision-making. All components of a clinical research article need to be appraised as per the study design and conduct. As research bias can be introduced at every step in the flow of a study leading to erroneous conclusions, it is essential that suitable measures are adopted to mitigate bias. Several tools have been developed for the critical appraisal of scientific literature, including grading of evidence to help clinicians in the pursuit of EBM in a systematic manner. In this review, we discuss the broad framework for the critical appraisal of a clinical research paper, along with some of the relevant guidelines and recommendations.

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