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Journal of Scientific Research and  Studies

Journal of Scientific Research and Studies Vol. 4(12), pp. 345-355, December, 2017

ISSN 2375-8791

Copyright 2017

Author(s) retain the copyright of this article



Prophylactic phenobarbitone in very low birth weight babies with unconjugated hyperbilirubinemia: Applying the principles of evidence based medicine


OPARA Peace I.

Department of Pediatrics, University of Port Harcourt/University of Port Harcourt Teaching Hospital, Port Harcourt, Nigeria. E-mail:


Accepted 19 November, 2017




Evidence-based medicine (EBM) is the conscientious, explicit and judicious use of current best evidence in making decisions about individual patients. It involves integrating individual clinical expertise with the best available external clinical evidence from systematic research. EBM and evidence based practice (EBP) seek to put together current research evidence and clinical practice, with the understanding of patient values to give the most appropriate care to patients. Although EBP has been in existence for several years and has taken center stage in resource rich countries, it is still relatively infantile in developing countries like Nigeria. EBP helps practitioners to critically review and evaluate the available evidence in other to strengthen or change existing practices or introduce new ones. This is particularly important where resources are limited, and cost and sustainability must be considered before changes in practice are made. The focus on EBP has led to establishment of institutions which develop guidelines to inform health care. Such guidelines are developed to communicate professional medical consensus and to assist in ethical issues in neonatal care. Again there is a dearth of such institutions in some developing countries emphasizing the need for physicians to acquire the skills needed for EBP. This review aims to give healthcare practitioners step by step overview of the EBM process by providing a practical approach to applying the principles to the stated topic. Coming from a resource poor area, it also seeks to justify whether cost and availability are enough to change practice in the light of available evidence.

Key words: Phenobarbitone, jaundice, evidence based medicine.

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