Systematic Reviews of Diagnostic Studies

The number of primary studies evaluating diagnostic tests is rising. Critically summarizing such studies in a systematic review is beneficial for health care professionals seeking the best evidence about the use of diagnostic tests. Reviews of diagnostic studies are more challenging because of more variation in questions & designs, specific sources of bias & variation, and the need to use more complex statistical approaches to meta-analysis. Several advances have recently been made in the methods to perform such reviews. In this course we discuss and practice the methods to assess the methodological quality of primary diagnostic test accuracy studies (QUADAS-2 instrument), the statistical models to meta-analyze the paired measures of test accuracy (bivariate meta-regression model of sensitivity and specificity), and how to critically read and interpret the findings of systematic review of diagnostic studies. The course consists of plenary presentations, small-group discussions, and computer exercises using the statistical software package R. It is one of the online medical courses that is part of the MSc Epidemiology Postgraduate Online Program.

  • Learning Objectives

  • Course Deadlines

  • Examination

  • Accreditation

  • Entry Requirements

Course is offered by

As part of the following program

Academic Staff

Hans Reitsma PhD


Support Staff

Mirjam Westerlaken MSc

Elevate Coordinator

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