Conflict of interest The authors have stated explicitly that there are no conflicts of interest in connection with this article.
Conclusive meta-analyses on antenatal magnesium may be inconclusive! Are we underestimating the risk of random error?
Article first published online: 1 NOV 2012
© 2012 The Authors Acta Obstetricia et Gynecologica Scandinavica© 2012 Nordic Federation of Societies of Obstetrics and Gynecology
Acta Obstetricia et Gynecologica Scandinavica
Volume 91, Issue 11, pages 1247–1251, November 2012
How to Cite
BROK, J., HUUSOM, L. D. and THORLUND, K. (2012), Conclusive meta-analyses on antenatal magnesium may be inconclusive! Are we underestimating the risk of random error?. Acta Obstetricia et Gynecologica Scandinavica, 91: 1247–1251. doi: 10.1111/aogs.12021
Please cite this article as: Brok J, Huusom LD, Thorlund K. Conclusive meta-analyses on antenatal magnesium may be inconclusive! Are we underestimating the risk of random error? Acta Obstet Gynecol Scand 2012; 91:1247–1251.
- Issue published online: 1 NOV 2012
- Article first published online: 1 NOV 2012
- Accepted manuscript online: 27 SEP 2012 10:27AM EST
- Received: 20 September 2012 , Accepted: 20 September 2012
- Cerebral palsy;
- magnesium sulfate;
- random error;
- randomized clinical trial;
- trial sequential analysis
Results from meta-analyses significantly influence clinical practice. Both simulation and empirical studies have demonstrated that the risk of random error (i.e. spurious chance findings) in meta-analyses is much higher than previously anticipated. Hence, authors and users of systematic reviews and meta-analyses have a responsibility to carefully consider the risk of random errors to avoid misleading conclusions. Trial sequential analysis is a useful meta-analytic method for gauging the risk of random error in meta-analysis and the amount of additional evidence required to reach firm conclusions about the investigated intervention effect(s). We outline the rationale for conducting trial sequential analysis including some examples of the meta-analysis on antenatal magnesium for women at risk of preterm birth.