Cochrane (organisation)

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
  (Redirected from Cochrane Database Syst Rev)
Jump to: navigation, search
Cochrane Logo Stacked RGB.png
Motto Trusted evidence. Informed decisions. Better health.
Formation 1993 (1993)
Type International NPO
Purpose Independent research into data about health care
Headquarters London, England [1]
Region served
Official language
Steering Group Co-Chairs
Lisa Bero,
Cindy Farquhar[2]
Over 37,000 (2015) [3]

Cochrane, previously known as the Cochrane Collaboration, is an independent, non-profit, non-governmental organization consisting of a group of more than 37,000 volunteers in more than 130 countries.[3] The group was formed to organize medical research information in a systematic way to facilitate the choices that health professionals, patients, policy makers and others face in health interventions according to the principles of evidence-based medicine.[4][5]

The group conducts systematic reviews of randomized controlled trials of health-care interventions and diagnostic tests, which it publishes in The Cochrane Library.[6][7] A few reviews (in fields such as occupational health) have also studied the results of non-randomized, observational studies.[8]


Cochrane was founded in 1993 under the leadership of Iain Chalmers. It was developed in response to Archie Cochrane's call for up-to-date, systematic reviews of all relevant randomized controlled trials of health care.[9][10][11]

Cochrane's suggestion that the methods used to prepare and maintain reviews of controlled trials in pregnancy and childbirth should be applied more widely was taken up by the Research and Development Programme, initiated to support the United Kingdom's National Health Service. Through the NHS R&D programme, led by the first Director of Research and Development Professor Michael Peckham,[12] funds were provided to establish a "Cochrane Centre", to collaborate with others, in the UK and elsewhere, to facilitate systematic reviews of randomized controlled trials across all areas of health care.[13][14]

Cochrane is currently concentrating on capacity building in health research in individuals, groups, and institutions in low- and middle-income countries (LMIC)s.[15]


The Cochrane logo illustrates a meta-analysis of data from seven randomized controlled trials (RCTs), comparing one health care treatment with a placebo in a forest plot. The diagram shows the results of a systematic review and meta-analysis on inexpensive course of corticosteroid given to women about to give birth too early – the evidence on effectiveness that would have been revealed had the available RCTs been reviewed systematically around 1982. This treatment reduces the odds of the babies of such women dying from the complications of immaturity by 30–50%. Because no systematic review of these trials was published until 1990,[16][17] most obstetricians had not realized that the treatment was so effective and therefore many premature babies probably suffered or died unnecessarily.[18]


An editorial in the Canadian Medical Association Journal in 2004 noted that Cochrane reviews appear to be more updated and of better quality than other reviews and due to their standardized methodologies, was "the best single resource for methodologic research and for developing the science of meta-epidemiology." Their work has also led to methodological improvements in the medical literature. However, the editorial also noted areas for improvement remained, including adequately assessing potential harms from medical interventions and providing a more user-friendly format as well as promoting international collaboration.[19]

Studies comparing the quality of Cochrane meta-analyses in the fields of infertility,[20] physiotherapy[20][21] and orthodontics,[22] to those published by other sources have concluded that Cochrane Reviews incorporate superior methodological rigor. A broader analysis across multiple therapeutic areas reached similar conclusions but was performed by Cochrane authors.[23] Compared to non-Cochrane reviews, those from Cochrane are less likely to reach a positive conclusion about the utility of medical interventions.[24] Key criticisms that have been directed at Cochrane's studies include a failure to include a sufficiently large number of unpublished studies, failure to pre-specify or failure to abide by pre-specified rules for endpoint[25] or trial[26] inclusion, insufficiently frequent updating of reviews, an excessively high percentage of inconclusive reviews,[27] and a high incidence of ghostwriting and honorary authorship.[28][not in citation given][29] In some cases Cochrane's internal structure may make it difficult to publish studies that run against the pre-conceived opinions of internal subject matter experts.[30]

An ongoing systematic review being performed by Cochrane authors will examine the potential impact of selective inclusion of results in meta-analyses, comparing Cochrane to non-Cochrane studies.[31]



In October 2013, Wikipedia and Cochrane announced a collaborative venture, the announced goals of which include increasing the incorporation of Cochrane research in Wikipedia articles and providing Wikipedia editors with additional resources and assistance in interpreting medical data.[32] Cochrane and John Wiley and Sons, the publisher of the Cochrane Reviews, provide financial support for the collaboration in the form of 100 free Cochrane Reviews accounts made available to Wikipedia medical editors, the financial value of which has been estimated by Cochrane at $30,000 to $80,000 dollars per annum. Other support includes a nominal stipend and travel expenses for a Wikipedian in Residence at Cochrane.[33]

In 2014 the Cochrane blog hosted a rebuttal written by four Wikipedia medical editors, in response to an article critical of the accuracy of Wikipedia medical content published in the Journal of the American Osteopathic Association.[34][35]

World Health Organization

Cochrane has been in official relations with the World Health Organization since 2011.[36] This collaboration includes the right to appoint a representative to participate, without vote, in WHO’s meetings, including at the World Health Assembly, the WHO’s decision-making body.[37] Participation in that assembly allows Cochrane to make expository statements on WHO health resolutions.[37]


  1. ^ "Contacting us | Cochrane". Retrieved 2015-09-15. 
  2. ^ The Cochrane Steering Group & Subgroups. Retrieved 2014-02-14.
  3. ^ a b "About us | Cochrane". Retrieved 2015-09-14. 
  4. ^ "Our principles". Cochrane Community. January 16, 2014. Retrieved 15 September 2015. 
  5. ^ Hill GB (December 2000). "Archie Cochrane and his legacy. An internal challenge to physicians' autonomy?". J Clin Epidemiol. 53 (12): 1189–92. doi:10.1016/S0895-4356(00)00253-5. PMID 11146263. 
  6. ^ Scholten RJ, Clarke M, Hetherington J (August 2005). "The Cochrane Collaboration". Eur J Clin Nutr. 59 (Suppl 1): S147–9; discussion S195–6. doi:10.1038/sj.ejcn.1602188. PMID 16052183. 
  7. ^ Ben Goldacre (2012), Bad Pharma, Fourth Estate, p. 14ff.
  8. ^ Kongsted, Hans; Konnerup, Merete (2012). "Are more observational studies being included in Cochrane Reviews?". BMC Research Notes. 5 (1): 570. doi:10.1186/1756-0500-5-570.  open access publication – free to read
  9. ^ Chalmers, I; Dickersin, K; Chalmers, TC (1992). "Getting to grips with Archie Cochrane's agenda". BMJ. 305 (6857): 786–788. doi:10.1136/bmj.305.6857.786. PMC 1883470Freely accessible. PMID 1422354. 
  10. ^ Cochrane AL (1972). Effectiveness and Efficiency. Random Reflections on Health Services. London: Nuffield Provincial Hospitals Trust. ISBN 0-900574-17-8. 
  11. ^ Winkelstein, Jr., W (September 2009). "The Remarkable Archie: Origins of the Cochrane Collaboration". Epidemiology. 20 (5): 779. doi:10.1097/EDE.0b013e3181aff391. 
  12. ^ Peckham M (August 1991). "Research and development for the National Health Service". Lancet. 338 (8763): 367–71. doi:10.1016/0140-6736(91)90494-A. PMID 1677710. 
  13. ^ "Cochrane History and Chronology". Retrieved 2015-10-05. 
  14. ^ Dickersin K, Manheimer E (1998). "The Cochrane Collaboration: evaluation of health care and services using systematic reviews of the results of randomized controlled trials". Clinical Obstetrics & Gynecology. 41 (2): 315–331. doi:10.1097/00003081-199806000-00012. PMID 9646964. 
  15. ^ Young T, Garner P, Kredo T, Mbuagbaw L, Tharyan P, Volmink J (2013). "Cochrane and capacity building in low- and middle-income countries: where are we at? [editorial]". Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews. 11: ED000072. 
  16. ^ Crowley, P; Chalmers, I; Keirse, MJ (January 1990). "The effects of corticosteroid administration before preterm delivery: an overview of the evidence from controlled trials.". British journal of obstetrics and gynaecology. 97 (1): 11–25. PMID 2137711. 
  17. ^ "Our logo | Cochrane". Retrieved 25 September 2016. 
  18. ^ "Explanation of the Cochrane logo". Retrieved 2015-10-05. 
  19. ^ Grimshaw J (September 2004). "So what has the Cochrane Collaboration ever done for us? A report card on the first 10 years". CMAJ. 171 (7): 747–9. doi:10.1503/cmaj.1041255. PMC 517860Freely accessible. PMID 15451837. 
  20. ^ a b Windsor B, Popovich I, Jordan V, Showell M, Shea B, Farquhar C (December 2012). "Methodological quality of systematic reviews in subfertility: a comparison of Cochrane and non-Cochrane systematic reviews in assisted reproductive technologies". Hum. Reprod. 27 (12): 3460–6. doi:10.1093/humrep/des342. PMID 23034152. 
  21. ^ Moseley, Anne M.; Elkins, Mark R.; Herbert, Robert D.; Maher, Christopher G.; Sherrington, Catherine (October 2009). "Cochrane reviews used more rigorous methods than non-Cochrane reviews: survey of systematic reviews in physiotherapy". Journal of Clinical Epidemiology. 62 (10): 1021–1030. doi:10.1016/j.jclinepi.2008.09.018. PMID 19282144. 
  22. ^ Fleming PS, Seehra J, Polychronopoulou A, Fedorowicz Z, Pandis N (April 2013). "Cochrane and non-Cochrane systematic reviews in leading orthodontic journals: a quality paradigm?". Eur J Orthod. 35 (2): 244–8. doi:10.1093/ejo/cjs016. PMID 22510325. 
  23. ^ Olsen O, Middleton P, Ezzo J, et al. (October 2001). "Quality of Cochrane reviews: assessment of sample from 1998". BMJ. 323 (7317): 829–32. doi:10.1136/bmj.323.7317.829. PMC 57800Freely accessible. PMID 11597965. 
  24. ^ Tricco AC, Tetzlaff J, Pham B, Brehaut J, Moher D (April 2009). "Non-Cochrane vs. Cochrane reviews were twice as likely to have positive conclusion statements: cross-sectional study". J Clin Epidemiol. 62 (4): 380–386.e1. doi:10.1016/j.jclinepi.2008.08.008. PMID 19128940. 
  25. ^ Tendal B, Nüesch E, Higgins JP, Jüni P, Gøtzsche PC (2011). "Multiplicity of data in trial reports and the reliability of meta-analyses: empirical study". BMJ. 343: d4829. doi:10.1136/bmj.d4829. PMC 3171064Freely accessible. PMID 21878462. 
  26. ^ Hutton P, Morrison AP, Yung AR, Taylor PJ, French P, Dunn G (July 2012). "Effects of drop-out on efficacy estimates in five Cochrane reviews of popular antipsychotics for schizophrenia". Acta Psychiatr Scand. 126 (1): 1–11. doi:10.1111/j.1600-0447.2012.01858.x. PMID 22486554. 
  27. ^ Green-Hennessy S (January 2013). "Cochrane systematic reviews for the mental health field: is the gold standard tarnished?". Psychiatr Serv. 64 (1): 65–70. doi:10.1176/ PMID 23117176. 
  28. ^ Stretton, S (14 July 2014). "Systematic review on the primary and secondary reporting of the prevalence of ghostwriting in the medical literature". BMJ Open. 4 (7): e004777. doi:10.1136/bmjopen-2013-004777. PMC 4120312Freely accessible. PMID 25023129.  open access publication – free to read
  29. ^ Tisdale JE (November 2009). "Integrity in authorship and publication". Can J Hosp Pharm. 62 (6): 441–7. doi:10.4212/cjhp.v62i6.840. PMC 2827013Freely accessible. PMID 22478931. 
  30. ^ "" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on September 5, 2014. 
  31. ^ Page MJ, McKenzie JE, Green SE, Forbes AB (2013). "An empirical investigation of the potential impact of selective inclusion of results in systematic reviews of interventions: study protocol". Syst Rev. 2: 21. doi:10.1186/2046-4053-2-21. PMC 3626625Freely accessible. PMID 23575367. 
  32. ^ Mathew, Manu; Joseph, Anna; Heilman, James; Tharyan, Prathap (2013). "Cochrane and Wikipedia: the collaborative potential for a quantum leap in the dissemination and uptake of trusted evidence[editorial]". Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews. 10 (10): ED000069. doi:10.1002/14651858.ED000069. PMID 24475488. Retrieved 15 September 2015. 
  33. ^ Orlowitz, Jake (May 5, 2014). "Cochrane Collaboration Recruits Talented Wikipedian In Residence". Wikimedia Foundation Global Blog. Wikimedia Foundation. Retrieved 15 September 2015.  Cross-posted on Cochrane Official Blog, May 13, 2014.
  34. ^ Chatterjee, Anwesh; Cooke, Robin M.T.; Furst, Ian; Heilman, James (2014-06-23). "Is Wikipedia's medical content really 90% wrong?". Cochrane Community. Retrieved 15 September 2015. 
  35. ^ Hasty RT, Garbalosa RC, Barbato VA, et al. (May 2014). "Wikipedia vs peer-reviewed medical literature for information about the 10 most costly medical conditions". J Am Osteopath Assoc. 114 (5): 368–73. doi:10.7556/jaoa.2014.035. PMID 24778001. 
  36. ^ Bero, Lisa; Bero, Lisa; Ghersi, Davina; Tovey, David (2011). "Making systematic reviews global". doi:10.1002/14651858.ED000020. 
  37. ^ a b "World Health Organization | Cochrane". Retrieved 2015-10-17. 

External links[edit]