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EBM Resource Center

How can I used what I've discovered?

If you have found evidence that is valid, significant and generalized from the study population to your patient, you must decide whether and how to apply the findings to your patient's care. 

It is at this step that you synthesize scientific knowledge with your clinical expertise and the patient's unique values and circumstances to reach a clinical decision:

EBM Clinical Decision Funnel

Before applying evidence from research to your patient, ask yourself:

  • Were the study patients similar to my population of interest - do the results apply to my patient?
  • Were all clinically important outcomes considered and are the results clinically important?
  • Are the likely treatment benefits worth the potential harm and costs?
  • Can this practice be implemented in this healthcare setting?
  • What are my patients’ values and preferences?
  • How can I help my patient make a decision?

Guyatt, G., Rennie, D., Meade, M.O., Cook, D.J. (Eds.). (2014). Users' guide to medical literature: a manual for evidence-based clinical practice (3rd ed.). McGraw-Hill.