Skip to Main Content

Evidence Based Medicine

A collection of all Sladen Library resources on the subject of evidence-based medicine.

How EBM Search Filters Work

About Sensitivity and Specificity:

High Sensitivity / Broad Strategy - Produces a broad search to include all relevant material, but may include some less relevant material. Retrieves as many documents as possible on a topic. This is also referred to as "recall."

High Specificity / Narrow Strategy - Produces the most targeted search to only include the most relevant results, however it may miss some materials. This is also referred to as "precision" and usually retrieves a smaller number of hits, although a larger proportion of them will be highly relevant. 

Best Balance of Sensitivity and Specificity / Balanced Strategy - The combination of terms that optimize the trade-off between sensitivity and specificity.

PubMed Filters

If you are using PubMedPubMed Clinical Queries are available. Clinical Queries includes searches for etiology, diagnosis, therapy, prognosis, clinical prediction guides, and systematic reviews. To use, enter your search term(s) into the search box, click the "Search" button, and results will display divided into each category. You will be able to narrow the "Clinical Study Categories" to your needs on the results page.    

OVID Medline Filters

  1. Access Ovid Medline and perform your search.
  2. In Ovid, Clinical Queries are treated like search limits. In the Limits box, which is located beneath the search box, click on Additional Limits. 
  3. Scroll down the page until you reach the "Clinical Queries" box. 
  4. Highlight the Clinical Query that you wish to execute, then click on the "Limit A Search" button at the top or bottom of the page.

CINAHL - Clinical Queries

Clinical Queries in CINAHL allow users to limit searches using pre-defined search strategies for locating high-quality, scientific research studies.

The Clinical Queries were developed specifically for CINAHL on EBSCOhost in collaboration with the Health Information Research Unit at McMaster University.  The queries are only available when using the advanced search option in EBSCOhost CINAHL.

  1. Go to the CINAHL database from the Sladen website.
  2. In CINAHL, click on Advanced Search located below the search box.
  3. The Clinical Queries are listed as a choice on the Limits page. Choose the Clinical Query that you would like to apply to your search, i.e. therapy, prognosis, review, causation. 
  4. Enter your search term into the main search box and click on "Search" to see the results.

Click here to review the search strategies that make up the Clinical Queries.