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“Clinical Jazz” Harmonizing Clinical Experience and Evidence-Based Medicine

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  1. “Clinical Jazz”Harmonizing Clinical Experience and Evidence-Based Medicine David C. Slawson, MD Allen F. Shaughnessy, PharmD Lorne A. Becker, MD Shaughnessy AF, Slawson DC, Becker L. Clinical jazz: Harmonizing clinical experience and evidence-based medicine. J Fam Pract 1998;47:425-8.

  2. Objectives • Perceived conflicts between EBM and clinical experience • Problems associated with relying solely on clinical experience- self/experts • Restructuring into harmony- “clinical jazz”

  3. Clinical Experience • The fertile ground from which ideas and hypotheses grow • Major conflict: Experience doesn’t jibe with research-based evidence

  4. Clinical Experience • Not a source of valid POEMs • Multiple validity problems

  5. Clinical Experience - Validity • Latest “bad experience” bias • “Out of sight, out of mind” • “he would have told me if he was having problems” • Nonrandom loss to follow up • Dissatisfied customers go elsewhere • Inability to combine outcome data for multiple patients

  6. Clinical Experience - Validity • Small sample size • “Stacking the deck”: Biased allocation to treatment groups • “Rose-colored glasses”: Biased assessment of outcomes

  7. “Reverse Gullibility” • The story of Semmelweis • 1847: hand washing decreased obstetric mortality from 18% to 1.2% • Virulent attacks lead to asylum commitment • MDIs vs nebulizers, eye-patches, H. pylori for PUD (Barry Marshall), home glucose monitors

  8. Experience: A problem of perception Do you see the Dalmatian in the picture? • Moral: Clinical experience sometimes prevents seeing the right picture • Now that you see it, can you try to not see it? • Moral: Experience can result in ideas that are difficult to change 4 www.optillusions.com

  9. Perceptions are difficult to refute Why is it so hard to believe that this is not a spiral but actually a set of concentric circles? http://www.michaelbach.de/ot/ang_frazer/index.html

  10. They really are!

  11. Clinical Experience Not really in competition with EBM

  12. Combining EBM and Experience: “Clinical Jazz” Structure plus Improvisation

  13. Clinical Jazz Improvisation without structure = cacophony

  14. Clinical Jazz Structure without Improvisation= tedium

  15. Remember “The Expert” • Expert in diagnosis and procedures (clinical experience) • Not necessarily expert in therapeutics (EBM) • Case series; LOE 4 at best • The best expert (YODA) combines experience with the evidence = Clinical Jazz

  16. Advantages of Information Mastery • A liberating structure • Stable (little chance of ping-pongs) • Simple rules (find the valid POEMs) • Relatively non-restrictive • There aren’t that many valid POEMs!

  17. Clinical Improvisation - Opportunities • Conditions with no valid POEMs • e.g. Screening for prostate cancer • Conditions with multiple valid POEMs • e.g. Depression

  18. Clinical Improvisation - Opportunities • Patients whose characteristics differ from those of patients included in research studies • Implementation methods for valid POEMs

  19. Clinical Improvisation - Potential Sources of Inspiration • Clinical Experience • Colleagues’ Ideas • Local Experts & Consultants • “Standard of Care” • DOEs • Others

  20. Clinical Improvisation Not a Solo Activity • Including the patient’s perspective • Working with a clinical team • Working with consultants • Working with partners

  21. “If you can’t listen, you can’t play jazz” Wynton Marsalis

  22. Valid POEMs“Outcomes-Based Research” • Goal: Notto replace clinical judgment, but to give clinicians more information to base opinions and practices. • “Primum non Nocere” • “Dualism”- distinction between clinical experience and patient-oriented research is in error

  23. Patient seen in practice Clinical Judgment Outcomes Research Circle of Clinical Reasoning

  24. Flaws in the Circle of Reasoning • Fallacy of Division: What is true of the whole must also be true of its parts • “Bell curve of clinical response” • Law of Diminishing Return, the “Keflex-Reflex” (How low do you need to go?)

  25. Flaws in the Circle of Reasoning • Fallacy of Hasty Conclusion: What is true of the parts must also be true of the whole • Using evidence from clinical experience to justify a general approach to all patients, without applying the rigors of the scientific method, may result in harm

  26. Flaws in the Circle of Reasoning • Must consider overall effect on population (disease-specific vs all-cause mortality) • PSA: may decrease deaths from prostate CA • Overall may harm more than help (quantity or quality of life) • Colon/breast CA- Less CA deaths, more CV deaths/year compared with control • 2/10,000/year fewer CA deaths • 2/10,000/year more CVD deaths • Bill and Jane die sooner so Frank and Judy live longer • Patient-specific vs population-based screening • Need for personal decision analysis using utilities • Wisdom vs knowledge vs information

  27. Why is Medicine Here? • Goals of medicine: • Relieve/prevent suffering • Maintain/provide hope • Prevent, treat, or cure disease • The science of medicine: • knowing the best way to prevent, treat, or cure disease • EBM can address this aspect • The art of medicine: • Determining, using intuition, experience, and judgment, what patients need the most • Clinical jazz = science + art

  28. “Mundus Vult Decipi”- “The world wishes to be deceived” People would rather be deceived than have the truth create anxiety. -Caleb Carr, “Killing Time”

  29. “The only sure foundations of medicine are an intimate knowledge of the human body and observations on the effects of medicinal substances on that body” -Thomas Jefferson

  30. “America’s two greatest gifts to the world are jazz and Medline.” --Richard Smith, BMJ 2001

  31. The Yin and Yang of Medicine • (Start music) • Rigid enforcement of outcomes-based guidelines just as misguided as foregoing results of patient-oriented research • The seeming opposites of medical practice, clinical science and clinical experience, are inseparable • Structure with improvisation = true art

  32. “If we shadows have offended, Think but this, and all is mended, That you have but slumbered here, While these visions did appear. And this weak and idle theme, No more yielding but a dream, Gentles, do not reprehend. If you pardon, we will mend . . . . So good(bye) unto you all.” William Shakespeare- A Midsummer Night’s Dream