gms | German Medical Science

G-I-N Conference 2012

Guidelines International Network

22.08 - 25.08.2012, Berlin

The importance of wording in guidelines recommendations – a German evaluation

Meeting Abstract

  • B. Sporbeck - Division of Evidence Based Medicine; Charité - Universitätsmedizin Berlin, Berlin, Germany
  • S. Rosumeck - Division of Evidence Based Medicine; Charité - Universitätsmedizin Berlin, Berlin, Germany
  • D. Pathirana - Division of Evidence Based Medicine; Charité - Universitätsmedizin Berlin, Berlin, Germany
  • R. Erdmann - Division of Evidence Based Medicine; Charité - Universitätsmedizin Berlin, Berlin, Germany
  • A. Nast - Division of Evidence Based Medicine; Charité - Universitätsmedizin Berlin, Berlin, Germany

Guidelines International Network. G-I-N Conference 2012. Berlin, 22.-25.08.2012. Düsseldorf: German Medical Science GMS Publishing House; 2012. DocP074

DOI: 10.3205/12gin186, URN: urn:nbn:de:0183-12gin1866

Published: July 10, 2012

© 2012 Sporbeck et al.
This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/3.0/deed.en). You are free: to Share – to copy, distribute and transmit the work, provided the original author and source are credited.


Outline

Text

Background: The successful implementation of guidelines strongly depends on its comprehensibility among its users. Therefore a standardized guideline (GL) language is useful. Wording of German therapeutic recommendations is not yet evaluated.

Objective: The overall aim is to establish a set of standard phrases for all German guidelines.

Methods: Physicians are asked for their perceived grade of obligation of commonly used phrases in German guidelines during an online survey using a visual analogue scale. A pilot study has already been performed. A large scale review is currently under way. Participants are physicians of selected professional societies (depending on number of members, number of published guidelines per society).

Results: The pilot study showed 1) a large variation in the perception of obligation of frequently selected wordings such as “soll” and “sollte” and 2) that all negative statements have a wider range of interpretation and are prone to be misunderstood (in terms of skipping the word “nicht”). Results of the current online survey will be presented and discussed.

Discussion: The pilot study revealed that certain wordings in guidelines can frequently not be separated accurately - including those terms suggested by the AWMF - Based on the findings of the presented survey a clear terminology will be suggested to standardize German guideline recommendations.

Implications: A set of clear wordings might be a useful tool for future guideline development.