One of the University of South Alabama College of Medicine's objectives is "The ability to acquire and manage the information that physicians need to carry out their various responsibilities and to acquire, evaluate and utilize information contained in the medical literature." With that in mind this two-part lecture series was designed to introduce medicalt students to the concepts of evidence based medicine (EBM) that can be used to achieve this objective. Focus of the lectures is on using EBM to evaluate Complementary and Alternative Medicine (CAM).
*What is Evidence Based Medicine(EBM)?
Evidence Based Medicine can be succintly characterized as the systematic integration of individual clinical expertise with the best available external clinical evidence from systematic research. EBM has also been defined as "The conscientious, explicit and judicious use of current best evidence in making decisions about TDe care of individual patients.
*Sackett DL, et al. Evidence-Based Medicine: What it is and what it isn’t. BMJ 1996; 312:71-2 (FULL TEXT.)
*What is Complimentary & Alternative Medicine (CAM)?
MESH defines Complimentary Therapies as: Therapeutic practices which are not currently considered an integral part of conventional allopathic medical practice. They may lack biomedical explanations but as they become better researched some (PHYSICAL THERAPY; DIET; ACUPUNCTURE) become widely accepted whereas others (humors, radium therapy) quietly fade away, yet are important historical footnotes. Therapies are termed as Complementary when used in addition to conventional treatments and as Alternative when used instead of conventional treatment.