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Is an IOTA of evidence enough?

  • Seth Nicholas Phillips Davis (a1) (a2), Nina Di Nicola (a1) (a2) and Sophie Gosselin (a1) (a2) (a3)
Clinical question

Do patients with acute illness admitted to the hospital and treated with liberal oxygen therapy compared with those treated with conservative oxygen therapy have differences in mortality and morbidity?

Article chosen

Chu DK, Kim LH, Young PJ, et al. Mortality and morbidity in acutely ill adults treated with liberal versus conservative oxygen therapy (IOTA): a systematic review and meta-analysis. Lancet 2018;391(10131):1693–705.


To analyse the existing literature to assess the potential benefits or harms of supplemental oxygen use in acutely ill patients.

Corresponding author
Correspondence to: Dr. Seth Nicholas Phillips Davis, McGill University Health Centre, 1001 Boulevard Décarie, Room CS16237.1, Montreal, QC H4A 3J1; Email:
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1.Kelly, CA, Maden, M. How do health-care professionals perceive oxygen therapy? A critical interpretive synthesis of the literature. Chron Respir Dis 2015;12:1123.
2.O'Driscoll, BR, Howard, LS, Earis, J, on behalf of the British Thoracic Society Emergency Oxygen Guideline Group, et al. BTS guideline for oxygen use in adults in healthcare and emergency settings. Thorax 2017;72:ii1–90.
3.Ryan, R, Hill, S. How to GRADE the quality of the evidence. Cochrane Consumers and Communication Group; 2016. Available at: Version 3.0 (accessed September 12, 2018).
4.Moher, D, Liberati, A, Tetzlaff, J, Altman, DG. The PRISMA Group. Preferred reporting items for systemic reviews and meta-analyses: the PRISMA statement. PLoS Med 2009;6(7):e1000097, doi:10.1371/journal.pmed1000097.
5.Murad, MH, Montori, VM, Ioannidis, JP, et al. How to read a systematic review and meta-analysis and apply the results to patient care: users’ guides to the medical literature. JAMA 2014;312(2):171–9.
6.Ferguson, CJ. An effect size primer: a guide for clinicians and researchers. Prof Psychol Res Pr 2009;40(5):532.
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Canadian Journal of Emergency Medicine
  • ISSN: -
  • EISSN: 1481-8035
  • URL: /core/journals/canadian-journal-of-emergency-medicine
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