Intended for healthcare professionals

Letters Opinion and evidence in guidelines

What is opinion and what is evidence?

BMJ 2019; 366 doi: (Published 13 September 2019) Cite this as: BMJ 2019;366:l5395
  1. Stewart Forsyth, retired medical director and consultant paediatrician
  1. Dundee DD5 1JG, UK
  1. stewartforsyth{at}

Medicine is not an exact science, and some people consider it an art—the underlying assertion is that the best clinicians are not only knowledgeable but also have reliable clinical judgment.1 Nonetheless, Schünemann and colleagues say that guideline development needs to distinguish opinion from evidence.2 Although they provide key definitions for their conceptual …

View Full Text

Log in

Log in through your institution


* For online subscription