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Year : 2012  |  Volume : 78  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 242--250

Doing meta-analysis in research: A systematic approach

1 Department of Community Medicine, Vardhman Mahavir Medical College, New Delhi, India
2 Director General (Medical Education), Government of Uttar Pradesh, India

Correspondence Address:
Vivek Jain
Department of Community Medicine, Vardhman Mahavir Medical College, New Delhi 110 029
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/0378-6323.95438

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Meta-analysis is an objective, systematic review that employs statistical methods to combine and summarize the results of several studies. It is a quantitative synthesis of all the unbiased evidence, meant for summarizing large volume of data, establishing and determining the magnitude of an effect, and to increase power and precision of studies. The steps to performing a meta-analysis include making a hypothesis and defining the domain of research, defining inclusion/exclusion criteria, literature search, selecting the final set of studies, extracting data on variables of interest, coding procedures, calculating effect sizes and interpretations, selecting potential moderators and examine their relationships, report writing, and critical evaluation. Meta-analysis has several strengths as well as weaknesses.


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Online since 15th March '04
Published by Wolters Kluwer - Medknow