Skip to main content

Table 3 Overview of guideline development methods (N = 40)

From: Guidelines for randomized clinical trial protocol content: a systematic review

Characteristic N (%)
Methods described (any)  
   Yes 8 (20)
   None reported 19 (48)
   Unclear* 13 (33)
Consensus process 6 (15)
   Formal (for example, Delphi) 0 (0)
   Informal consensus and/or consensus meeting(s) 4 (10)
Pilot testing 2 (5)
Validation  
   Formal validation 1 (3)
   Informal validation - shared with a broader circle of experts (for example, for face validity) 5 (13)
   Future plans to validate 1 (3)
Search for existing guidance/evidence to inform guideline recommendations  
   Yes 2 (5)
     Search for previous guidelines 2 (5)
        Systematic 0 (0)
     Search for empirical evidence 1 (3)
        Systematic 0 (0)
   None reported 34 (85)
   At least one empirical study referenced to support at least one guideline item - methods of searching not reported 3 (8)
   Unclear 1 (3)
Number of authors/stated contributors - median (IQR); range 2 (1, 3); 1 to 88
   Not stated 11 (28)
Time frame for guideline development (years) [n = 4 guidelines] - median (IQR); range 4 (2, 4); 1 to 5
  1. * If no methods were described, institutional guidelines were inferred to have some form of consensus and were labeled as unclear.