The Cochrane Schizophrenia Group

Get involved in the development of a new reporting guideline for social and psychological interventions!

An international initiative of researchers, journal editors, and stakeholders in intervention studies is working with the Consolidated Standards for Reporting Trials (CONSORT) Group to develop CONSORT-SPI: an official Extension for Social and Psychological Interventions.

We are currently looking for participants for an upcoming Delphi process (starting mid-September 2013) to generate possible reporting standards for the guideline. Stakeholders involved in researching, publishing, funding, commissioning, or providing these interventions are invited to contact us to participate.

Please email the Project Executive at CONSORT.study@spi.ox.ac.uk or complete the CONSORT-SPI participant form if you are interested!

Further information about the project can be found on The University of Oxford website under CONSORT study:  project publications and presentations.

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My first 40 days as a Trials Search Coordinator (TSC) in the CSzG

By Farhad Shokraneh, TSC for the CSzG

United Kingdom: stamp

United Kingdom: stamp (Photo credit: Sem Paradeiro)

I used to be a Librarian or as we are now known as, an ‘information specialist’.  Even as young boy, age 12, I had a small library at home with coded books.  But about ten years later, I noticed my real interest when I got involved with the Iranian Center for Evidence-Based Medicine where I attended Prof. Paul Glasziou’s workshop.  It was like discovering a new continent in the science world for me.  I chose my field and I continued my ambitions to be a Cochrane Librarian, or as it is known in the Cochrane world, a Trial Search Coordinator (TSC).  Well, it did not happen over night, it took me three years to get the minimum requirements before deciding to apply for this job.  While applying, I was just worried about two things (including the results of course): Read the rest of this entry »

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Trust the machine? A keen eye is what you need

By Drew Davey, Research Assistant for the CSzG

I recently encountered Cyndy Green’s blog Thinking Visually and realised that her Jan 6 2013 posting “Battling the modern mindset and its deeply rooted trust of technology” had massive reference to my own work.

English: Magnifying glass with focus on paper....

English: Magnifying glass with focus on paper. Text in the background is from the public domain work Die Baukunst, issue 11, page 8, written by . Rendered with a development version of Cycles in Blender. Deutsch: Lupe mit Fokus auf dem Papier. Der im Hintergrund verwendete Text stammt aus gemeinfreien Werk Die Baukunst, Heft 11, Seite 8, das von Max Hasak geschrieben wurde. Gerendert mit einer Entwickerversion von Cycles in Blender. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

My name is Drew Davey and I have been working with the Cochrane Schizophrenia Group since 1998, fetching published articles of treatment trials, and assessing their designs. The Cochrane Register of Studies is ostensibly composed of random controlled trials (RCTs) which Archie Cochrane recognized as the gold standard of medical evidence. Since ’98, I have learned to use numerous database programs and am aware that my work would now be impossible without computerized search and storage. The painful need to revisit and read each library’s catalogue every time a new search list appeared on my desk could never work now. The proliferation of journals alone would overwhelm manual searching. No problem, you say, Read the rest of this entry »

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Prescribing as a junior doctor: do we know what we think we know?

Generic

Generic (Photo credit: Kraemer Family Library)

By Jennifer Nelson, Junior Doctor

“Evidence-based medicine” (EBM) is a term that is familiar to all junior doctors. But how often do we really consider EBM in our everyday practice? Are our decisions on how to treat patients made after careful consideration of the evidence, or do we simply follow trust protocols, or, more likely, go with a sort of “gut-feeling” about which treatment to offer?

Recently,  I was asked to review a patient with paranoid schizophrenia who is currently relapsing. He had been restarted on the antipsychotic Aripiprazole two weeks prior to me seeing him. He was starting to show signs of improvement; the voices were diminishing and he was gaining partial insight into the fact that the “pills” might be helping him. At the end of the interview, I decided to suggest an increase in the dose of Aripiprazole from 15mg to 20mg.  Read the rest of this entry »

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