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Review of publication bias in studies on publication bias: Meta-research on publication bias does not help transfer research results to patient care

BMJ 2005; 331 doi: (Published 15 September 2005) Cite this as: BMJ 2005;331:638
  1. Peter Kranke, reader in evidence based health care and clinical economics (
  1. Department of Anaesthesiology, University Hospital of Würzburg (Germany), Oberdürrbacher Strasse 6, D-97080 Würzburg, Germany

    Editor—Dubben and Beck-Bornholdt conclude that there is no evidence of publication bias in reports on publication bias.1 Apart from the fact that funnel plots should be used only as a “tool” and not a “rule” in the evaluation of publication bias,2 I question whether such “meta-research” really helps to improve patient care or facilitates the applicability of research results.

    Systematic …

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