I am not a doctor or medical student, but I have been reading a lot of medical studies recently to become a more informed patient. I read one study (which I unfortunately can't find at the moment) about doctors' attitudes towards a drug depending on different characteristics of studies they read on the drug, and doctors cited quality of methods used in the study as an important factor in their willingness to prescribe a drug. This is encouraging news. I was wondering, however, what the criteria are that most doctors (or you personally) have for a high-quality research study. I know randomization helps to minimize differences between treatment groups and having a double-blind study is helpful, but beyond that, I am not sure what makes a study high-quality, and of course there can be high-quality studies that are neither of those things. I am quite partial towards articles without any industry ties in the researchers or funding, although they can be difficult to find in medicine. How do you critically evaluate a study? Thanks.
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