Douglas Badenoch

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I am an information scientist with an interest in making knowledge from systematic research more accessible to people who need it. This means you. I've been attempting this in the area of Evidence-Based Health Care since 1995. So far the results have been mixed. For some reason we expected busy clinicians to search databases and appraise papers instead of seeing patients. We also expected publishers to make the research freely available to the people who paid for it.. Ha! Hence The National Elf service.


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More evidence needed on additional interventions to reduce mortality in older people with depression

Older man

It has consistently been shown that a link exists between older adults who have depression and mortality (Cuijpers & Smit, 2002, Schulz et al., 2002). RCTs have demonstrated that treating depression during later life in primary care settings can result in the remission of depression and its associated symptoms as well as improve quality of [read the full story…]

Systematic review exposes the lack of evidence for psychosocial interventions in patients with head and neck cancer

The Dental Elf

Today we feature a blog from our good friend, The Dental Elf, whose remit includes Head and Neck cancers. The psychological impacts of such cancers can be devastating, so we were interested to see a systematic review looking at the impact of psychosocial interventions on anxiety, depression and quality of life. Unfortunately, the bottom line [read the full story…]

New NICE TA: Aripiprazole for treating moderate to severe manic episodes in adolescents with bipolar I disorder


NICE has just published a new technology appraisal recommending aripiprazole as a treatment for bipolar disorder in young people. Technology Appraisals are systematic evaluations of the effectiveness of health technologies.  They do not have the broad scope of guidelines, which focus on topics rather than technologies, but they do give guidance for clinical practice on the [read the full story…]

New systematic review protocols for periodontal disease and caries prevention

Logo of The Cochrane Collaboration

Two new systematic review protocols have been published in the Cochrane Library recently.  This indicates research in progress, of course, and we would not expect results to be published for some time.  However, people who are investigating these topic areas may like to know that a review is under way. The full text of each [read the full story…]

Updated systematic review on surgery for oral cancer

An operating theatre.

The existing Cochrane systematic review on surgical treatment of oral and oropharyngeal cancers has been updated, with important changes to the conclusions. The reviewers concluded that  there was weak evidence to suggest that dissection of clinically negative neck nodes at the time of removal of the primary tumour reduced cancer recurrence.  However, there was insufficient [read the full story…]

No increase in infective carditis after reducing routine antibiotic prophylaxis

Assorted pills

NICE Guideline 64 does not recommend the routine use of antibiotic prophylaxis in invasive dental procedures to prevent infective carditis.  Their guideline states that patients should only be offered it if the procedure is at a site where there is already a suspected infection. This guidance caused some difficulties for dentists, as reported in the [read the full story…]

Articaine better than lignocaine for routine molar anaesthesia


This systematic review was originally published in the Journal of Dentistry in 2010. The Centre for Reviews and Dissemination have now appraised the quality of the review and written a structured abstract of it. They conclude that the review conducted a comprehensive search strategy, with a risk of some publication bias due to their inclusion [read the full story…]

Cost effectiveness of implants versus root canal treatment

Cross section of a dental implant

A new summary has just been added to the CRD Economic Evaluation Database (EED).  The review contains a structured abstract of the methods and findings of a cost-effectiveness study of conventional approaches vs implants in root canal treatment. This study evaluated the cost-effectiveness of available interventions to treat a maxillary incisor tooth with irreversible pulpitis [read the full story…]

Cost-effectiveness of oral cancer screening: results from India

A woman having a dental examination.

This study examined the cost-effectiveness of a visual inspection for oral cancer prevention in individuals aged 35 years or older, in India.  The authors concluded that oral cancer screening by visual inspection was cost-effective, particularly for a high-risk population. They reported that screening by visual inspection saved 269.31 life-years per 100,000 patients at a cost [read the full story…]

Review of the effectivess of latex and non-latex disposable gloves

Picture of a hand wearing a surgical glove and making a thumbs-up sign

A new review by the Canadian Agency for Drugs and Technologies in Health (CADTH) summarises the evidence for different types of glove in surgical settings. The review concludes that latex gloves may be more resistant to punctures than non-latex gloves in the surgical setting. Vinyl gloves are permeable to chemotherapy and are not suitable for [read the full story…]