Mini-Mental State Examination (MMSE) for the detection of dementia in clinically unevaluated people aged 65 and over in community and primary care populations

Cochrane Systematic Reviews, January 2016

This Cochrane Review finds that the MMSE contributes to a diagnosis of dementia in low prevalence settings, but should not be used in isolation to confirm or exclude disease. They recommend that future work evaluates the diagnostic accuracy of tests in the context of the diagnostic pathway experienced by the patient and that investigators report how undergoing the MMSE changes patient-relevant outcomes.

Click here to access the full text review.

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Methylphenidate for attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder in children and adolescents: Cochrane systematic review with meta-analyses and trial sequential analyses of randomised clinical trials

BMJ, 25 November 2015

This systematic review looks at whether methylphenidate is beneficial or harmful for the treatment of attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) in children and adolescents?

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Intake of saturated and trans unsaturated fatty acids and risk of all cause mortality, cardiovascular disease, and type 2 diabetes: systematic review and meta-analysis of observational studies

BMJ, 12 August 2015

This paper aims to systematically review associations between intake of saturated fat and trans unsaturated fat and all cause mortality, cardiovascular disease (CVD) and associated mortality, coronary heart disease (CHD) and associated mortality, ischemic stroke, and type 2 diabetes.

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Efficacy and safety of paracetamol for spinal pain and osteoarthritis: systematic review and meta-analysis of randomised placebo controlled trials

BMJ, 31 March 2015

This paper investigates the efficacy and safety of paracetamol (acetaminophen) in the management of spinal pain and osteoarthritis of the hip or knee through a systematic review and meta-analysis.

The paper concludes that paracetamol is ineffective in the treatment of low back pain and provides minimal short term benefit for people with osteoarthritis. These results support the reconsideration of recommendations to use paracetamol for patients with low back pain and osteoarthritis of the hip or knee in clinical practice guidelines.

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Case management approaches to home support for people with dementia

Cochrane Review, January 2015

This Cocrane Review aims to evaluate the effectiveness of case management approaches to home support for people with dementia, from the perspective of the different people involved (patients, carers, and staff) compared with other forms of treatment, including ‘treatment as usual’, standard community treatment and other non-case management interventions.

The review concludes that there is some evidence that case management is beneficial at improving some outcomes at certain time points, both in the person with dementia and in their carer. However, there was considerable heterogeneity between the interventions, outcomes measured and time points across the 13 included RCTs. There was some evidence from good-quality studies to suggest that admissions to care homes and overall healthcare costs are reduced in the medium term; however, the results at longer points of follow-up were uncertain. There was not enough evidence to clearly assess whether case management could delay institutionalisation in care homes. There were uncertain results in patient depression, functional abilities and cognition. Further work should be undertaken to investigate what components of case management are associated with improvement in outcomes. Increased consistency in measures of outcome would support future meta-analysis.

Click here for more information and to download the paper.