Planning the update
|Standard||Rationale and elaboration||Resources|
|U1||Reconsidering review questions||Mandatory|
|Confirm or amend review question (PICO) and objectives.||
Consider whether it is important to modify or add new objectives to make the review relevant to its users.
Consider whether the review will be split, merged with another review or otherwise changed substantially. If so, a new protocol might be warranted and the MECIR conduct standards should be followed rather than these update standards. It will be necessary to agree the approach to updating the review with the CRG.
|See Handbook Section IV.3.1, Section 2.1 and Section 2.3|
|Confirm or amend outcomes of interest||
Consider whether it is necessary to modify or add outcomes to ensure all user-important outcomes, including adverse effects, are addressed. Define which outcomes are primary outcomes and which are secondary outcomes. Keep the total number of outcomes as small as possible. Consider core outcome sets where available. Prioritize outcomes that will be assessed with the GRADE considerations.
|See Handbook Section 1.5, Section 2.1, Section 22.214.171.124, Section 5.4.1|
|U3||Reconsidering eligibility criteria||Mandatory|
|Confirm or amend eligibility criteria.||Changes to the review objectives (e.g. additional consideration of rare adverse effects, economic issues or qualitative issues) may require modification of the eligibility criteria, possibly extending the scope to additional types of studies.|
|U4||Planning the search||Mandatory|
|Decide appropriate search methods||
There are four considerations in planning search methods for updates:
See Handbook Section IV.3.4
|U5||Reconsidering data collection and analysis methods||Mandatory|
|Consider whether methods for data collection and analysis (including a GRADE assessment) need to be amended in the light of recent methodological developments.||
Decide if changes are required to make better use of existing data or to incorporate new data by referring to the current version of the Handbook. Recent developments in ’Risk of bias’ assessment, statistical methods or narrative synthesis approaches may lead to more inclusive or more robust synthesis of the evidence.
The GRADE assessment will require evaluation of risk of bias, inconsistency, imprecision, indirectness and publication bias. See MECIR update standard U11.
If a ‘Summary of findings’ table is not included in the current version, decide on the main outcomes and comparisons to be included and ensure that the relevant data have been (or will be) collected. See MECIR update standard UR5
|Planning GRADE and SoF tables.|