Chapter 3. Clinical Trials and Meta-Analysis

  1. Salim Yusuf DPhil, FRCPC, FRSC Research Chair Professor of Medicine Director Vice President Research3,4,5,
  2. John A Cairns MD, FRCPC Professor of Medicine Former Dean6,
  3. A John Camm MD British Heart Foundation Professor Head of Cardiac7,
  4. Ernest L Fallen MD, FRCPC Professor Emeritus8 and
  5. Bernard J Gersh MB, ChB, DPhil Consultant Professor of Medicine9
  1. Jonathan R Emberson BA, MSc, PhD1,2 and
  2. Colin Baigent BM, BCh, FFPH, FRCP Professor of Epidemiology1,2

Published Online: 21 MAY 2010

DOI: 10.1002/9781444309768.ch3

Evidence-Based Cardiology, Third Edition

Evidence-Based Cardiology, Third Edition

How to Cite

Emberson, J. R. and Baigent, C. (2009) Clinical Trials and Meta-Analysis, in Evidence-Based Cardiology, Third Edition (eds S. Yusuf, J. A. Cairns, A. J. Camm, E. L. Fallen and B. J. Gersh), Wiley-Blackwell, Oxford, UK. doi: 10.1002/9781444309768.ch3

Editor Information

  1. 3

    McMaster University, Canada

  2. 4

    Population Health Research Institute, McMaster University, Hamilton Health Sciences, Canada

  3. 5

    Hamilton Health Sciences, Hamilton, Ontario, Canada

  4. 6

    Faculty of Medicine, University of British Columbia, Vancouver, BC, Canada

  5. 7

    St George's University of London, London, UK

  6. 8

    McMaster University Faculty of Health Sciences, Hamilton, Ontario, Canada

  7. 9

    Mayo Clinic College of Medicine, Rochester, MN, USA

Author Information

  1. 1

    Clinical Trial Service Unit, Oxford, UK

  2. 2

    Epidemiological Studies Unit (CTSU), Oxford, UK

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 21 MAY 2010
  2. Published Print: 13 NOV 2009

ISBN Information

Print ISBN: 9781405159258

Online ISBN: 9781444309768



  • clinical trials and meta-analysis;
  • availability of large-scale randomized trials;
  • clinical trials - minimizing biases and random errors;
  • trial design facilitation - limiting amount of information recorded;
  • homogeneity - serious defect in clinical trial design;
  • biases affecting reliability of meta-analysis


This chapter contains sections titled:

  • Introduction

  • Clinical trials: minimizing biases and random errors

  • Large-scale meta-analysis

  • Can observational studies substitute for large-scale randomized trials/meta-analyses?

  • Conclusion

  • References