Appraisal of: " Luhnen M, Prediger B, Neugebauer EA, Mathes T. Systematic reviews of health economic evaluations: A structured analysis of characteristics and methods applied. Res Syn Methods. 2019:10;2:195-206."

Short description: 

The review investigates the characteristics and methods, including literature searches, used in 202 systematic reviews of health economic evaluations. A median of 4 electronic databases were searched (range: 1 - 16). The systematic reviewers searched general medical databases (MEDLINE and Embase), 56% of the reviews searched specific economic databases and 33% searched specific systematic review and health technology assessment databases. In terms of the search strategies, the majority of authors did not use published filters and at least half of SRs of economic evaluations applied a limit to the literature search, mostly time limits. 

Limitations stated by the author(s): 

The study authors highlighted that they had not extracted all the data in duplicate and also highlighted that they had only searched MEDLINE to retrieve SRs of economic evaluations and that this may have impacted on the completeness of their search results. However, they suggested that this had probably not negatively affected the findings, as the paper is a representative sample of current SR-HEs and not a complete overview.

Limitations stated by the reviewer(s): 
The review authors stated that ‘the majority of authors did not use filters’, but do not specify the percentage or what filters were used by the authors that did use them. The review authors also do not specify what other limits were used. The authors state that economics search terms were used, but again they do not discuss this in detail.
Study Type: 
Review
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