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The potential role of DSS in CVD prevention remains unclear as only a few studies report on patient outcomes for cardiovascular disease.
Methods and Results
A systematic review and meta-analysis of randomised controlled trials and observational studies was done using Medline, Embase, Cochrane Library, PubMed, Amed, CINAHL, Web of Science, Scopus databases; reference lists of relevant studies to 30 July 2011; and email contact with experts. The primary outcome was prevention of cardiovascular disorders (myocardial infarction, stroke, coronary heart disease, peripheral vascular disorders and heart failure) and management of hypertension owing to decision support systems, clinical decision supports systems, computerized decision support systems, clinical decision making tools and medical decision making (interventions). From 4116 references ten studies met our inclusion criteria (including 16,312 participants). Five papers reported outcomes on blood pressure management, one paper on heart failure, two papers each on stroke, and coronary heart disease. The pooled estimate for CDSS versus control group differences in SBP (mm of Hg) was - 0.99 (95% CI −3.02 to 1.04 mm of Hg; I2 = 0; p = 0.851).
DSS show an insignificant benefit in the management and control of hypertension (insignificant reduction of SBP). The paucity of well-designed studies on patient related outcomes is a major hindrance that restricts interpretation for evaluating the role of DSS in secondary prevention. Future studies on DSS should (1) evaluate both physician performance and patient outcome measures (2) integrate into the routine clinical workflow with a provision for decision support at the point of care.
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