Table 4

Methods for Incorporating risk of bias assessments into reviews during synthesis

Number of reviews% of category total
Were risk of bias assessments incorporated into synthesis?
 Not applicable23
How were risk of bias assessments incorporated into synthesis?*
 Sensitivity analysis (eg, limiting to studies at lowest risk of bias in a secondary analysis)2054
 Narrative (discussion within text)1438
 Exclusion of studies at high risk of bias from main review synthesis514
 Other approach411
  • *Denominator is the number of reviews that incorporated risk of bias into the synthesis process. Note that the total adds up to more than 100% because some reviews used multiple methods. The list of other approaches used is available in the web appendix.