Intended for healthcare professionals

Rapid response to:

Endgames Statistical Question

How to read a forest plot in a meta-analysis

BMJ 2015; 351 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.h4028 (Published 24 July 2015) Cite this as: BMJ 2015;351:h4028

Rapid Response:

Re: How to read a forest plot in a meta-analysis

Dr. Sedgwick writes as regarding inclusion of participants in the studies included for the meta-analysis, as follows:

"Randomised controlled trials were included if the intervention consisted of seven days or more of eradication therapy, and if the control treatment was placebo or no treatment. Participants were adults who tested positive for H pylori. They were otherwise healthy and asymptomatic at baseline and were followed "for" two or more years. The primary outcome was the diagnosis of gastric cancer."

Here we have an objection that the follow-up period is important in making a diagnosis of cancer. It should not be two years or more.Two years is too less a period in development of cancer. It should be rather "from" (instead of "for") two years and more.

Competing interests: No competing interests

15 April 2017
Neeru Gupta
Scientist F
Jugal Kishore.
Indian Council of Medical Research
Ansari Nagar, New Delhi-110029.