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BIOL181 - Barr: Home

From journal articles to prevention and cause

A major challenge of your assignment will be translating from a journal article to a discrete cause or prevantative for cancer. Why?

Journal articles have a very narrrow focus

For example, an article with the title, "Breast cancer genetic counseling after diagnosis but before treatment: A pilot study on treatment consequences and psychological impact" is examining a specific and small piece of cancer research. It's not reporting on stomach, lung or any other type of cancer. It's not discussing any specific treatement. It's not talking about screening to catch cases earlier. It's not going over other types of counseling (e.g. psychological). 

The article is only concerned with breat cancer and only with the treatment consequences of genetic counseling during a narrow and specific time frame. Further, this article is only examining women with a BRCA1/2 gene mutation, and only those who received rapid genetic counseling (no other types) during 2004 - 2008 and only at  The Netherlands Cancer Institute. This is exactly 10 women. 

What should I look for in an article?

Some articles wil have a wider topic, but still not as wide as a book. For example: Cancer: Diagnosis and Treatment would be a (very large) book. Journal articles just won't cover everything about a broad topic. But book authors will use many different journal articles to form the evidence for the book. That's just what you are doing!  Article that will be more general may include:

Meta-analysis (a study of a bunch of other studies about a topic) Example: Effects of Yoga on Psychologic Function and Quality of Life in Women with Breast Cancer: A Meta-Analysis of Randomized Controlled Trials

Primary care provider practice review (some of the medical journals have features that go over the most up-to-date research on causes and treatment for a disease for folks on the front line of care that may not have time to "keep up" on all the research) Example: Overview of Breast Cancer Treatment and Reconstruction for Primary Care Providers

Trend or theme analysis (this kind of study usually looks at a theme over serveral years in various ascpets of diagnosis and treatment) Example: Racial Differences in Breast Cancer Stage at Diagnosis in the Mammography Era


Hospital Rankings

An interesting article about difficulties with different system of hosptial rankings. No one hospital scores high in the four mentioned.

Occupational Outlook Handbook

The Occupational Outlook Handbook has information on careers: daily routine, working conditions, how much one uses a computer, and the hiring outlook for the next few years in the field.

Finding the best hospital

Hospitals are ranked by many different organizations on many different issues for many different reasons. How do we tell which ranking system is reliable? 

Read a nice summary of some of the issues around hospital rankings with a local focus. 

Finding the library databases

Using EBSCOhost databases

This is a general video about all the EBSCOhost databases including Health Source and CINAHL.