Lower Anogenital Tract Disease Therapy Outcomes, COMET, and CROWN: Call for Research Submissions


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Abstract

ObjectivesThere is a problem of inconsistent and inappropriate outcome selection for research studies. We can improve the relevance of research results for women and for their physicians and clinicians by encouraging researchers to critically evaluate outcome measures, and use valid, appropriate, standardized measures. To this purpose, and to facilitate synthesis of the evidence, outcomes reported by clinical studies should be standardized for different disease conditions through the development of core outcome sets (COS).MethodsThere is an international effort for reaching consensus on outcome measures and establishing COS that represent agreed-upon standardized collections of outcome measures that will be reported in all studies within a clinical area. Across clinical specialties, the Core Outcome Measures in Effectiveness Trials (COMET) initiative launched in 2010. In 2014, the editors of women's health journals answered the challenge of COMET and formed the Core Outcomes in Women's Health initiative. The Journal of Lower Genital Tract Diseases is a participating member of the Core Outcomes in Women's Health consortium.ResultsThere is broad inconsistency in outcome measures and reporting in the field of lower anogenital tract diseases. No core outcome sets currently exist. Suggested target conditions in anogenital disease are vulvar dermatoses, cervical intraepithelial neoplasia, and vulvodynia.ConclusionsInvestigators are encouraged to conduct secondary systematic research to determine previously reported primary outcome measures and suggest domains for COS. Core Outcomes in Women's health initiative and COMET encourage the formation of consensus panels of stakeholders (researchers, health care providers, patients, and others) to recommend outcome domains and COS and then publish their report.

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