To the Editor: In his Editorial, Dr Wilt1 described the relative lack of reliable evidence
for treatment of prostate cancer, and then suggested the need for well-conducted
randomized controlled trials (RCTs) to lessen the uncertainty that surrounds
many treatments for prostate cancer. However, it will only be through systematic
reviews of all relevant randomized trials that patients and health care professionals
will be provided with a reliable summary of the evidence.2
Without such reviews, there is a danger that those involved in the treatment
of prostate cancer will simply switch from selective citing of opinion to
selective citing of randomized trials. Systematic reviews, such as those from
the Cochrane Collaboration, should underpin the design of every randomized
trial and are vital to the interpretation of the results of every trial. Unfortunately,
this seems to be the exception and it needs to become the rule.3
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