Systematic reviews apply rigorous methodologies to address a pre-specified, clearly formulated clinical research question. The conclusion that results is often cited to more robustly inform decision-making by clinicians, third-party payers and managed care organizations about the clinical question of interest. While systematic reviews provide a rigorous standard, they may be unfeasible when the task is to create general disease-focused guidelines comprised of multiple clinical practice questions versus a single major clinical practice question. Collaborating transplantation and cellular therapy societal committees also recognize that the quantity and or quality of reference sources may be insufficient for a meaningful systematic review. As the conduct of systematic reviews has evolved over time in terms of grading systems, reporting requirements and use of technology, here we provide current guidance in methodologies, resources for reviewers, and approaches to overcome challenges in conducting systematic reviews in transplantation and cellular therapy.
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