CAM Education

Understanding the jargon of medical research

I try to avoid jargon when blogging, but sometimes it’s necessary in order to present the results of clinical trials and their implications clearly.

  • Evidence-based medicine: a systematic review to evaluate research findings for the clinical care of patients
  • Meta-analysis: a statistical technique for combining the findings from independent studies in order to assess the clinical effectiveness of healthcare interventions
  • Confidence interval: a measure of treatment effect, preferable to p-values
  • Cost-effectiveness: compares the costs and health effects of an intervention to assess its worth from an economic perspective
  • Quality of life: emotional, social and physical wellbeing, and the ability to function in the ordinary tasks of living

These terms and others are defined and discussed on the Bandolier website.

7/29/06 19:56 JR

Hi, I’m JR

John Russo, Jr., PharmD, is president of The MedCom Resource, Inc. Previously, he was senior vice president of medical communications at, a complementary and alternative medicine website.