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Table 2 Characteristics of reviews included in this study. Numbers in parenthesis are percentages

From: A survey of prevalence of narrative and systematic reviews in five major medical journals

Characteristics Systematic review Narrative review
Clinically oriented (CO) issuea 73 (97) 168 (84)
PHPMb issue 2 (3) 32 (16)
Number of citations 5461 10,000
Methodology reported?
• Search 4 (5) 126 (63)
• Selection 0 (0) 0 (0)
• Extraction 0 (0) 0 (0)
• Quality assessment 0 (0) 0 (0)
• Search + selection 0 (0) 0 (0)
• Search + quality assessment 1 (1.5) 0 (0)
• Search + selection + extraction 3 (4) 0 (0)
• Search + selection + quality assessment 4 (5) 0 (0)
• Search + extraction + quality assessment 1 (1.5) 0 (0)
• Search + selection + extraction + quality assessment 60 (80) 0 (0)
• No methodology reported 2 (3) 74 (37)
  1. aCO issue: any review intended to address the management of a clinical condition (including also any measure to prevent disease). It includes reviews analysing the effectiveness, side-effects of interventions or both, effectiveness of screening etc
  2. bPHPM issue: any review intended to generate hypotheses or facilitate discussion in the medical community