Methodology and grading of the evidence for the diagnosis and management of cough: ACCP evidence-based clinical practice guidelines.
OBJECTIVES: To assemble a multidisciplinary, geographically diverse panel of experts in the diagnosis and treatment of cough with the intention of developing clinically relevant practice guidelines for pulmonary and primary care physicians, including recommendations covering many etiologies of cough, adult and pediatric evaluation and treatment, and empiric yet integrative algorithms for the management of the patient with cough. METHODS: The Duke University Center for Clinical Health Policy Research was selected to review and summarize the current evidence in this area. The expert panel established clinical recommendations and algorithms founded on the synthesis of this evidence. CONCLUSIONS: This section describes the approach used to develop the guidelines, including identifying, evaluating, and synthesizing the evidence, assessing the strength of evidence pertinent to individual guidelines, and grading the guideline recommendations.
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