[R-meta] Mata-analysis: combining retrospective studies and randomized trials

Christian Mirian Larsen christian.mirian.larsen at gmail.com
Mon Mar 19 11:57:55 CET 2018

Dear all

My main question is "can retrospective studies and randomized controlled
trials be combined in a meta-analysis?".

E.g., I want to investigate the prophylactic effect of antiepileptic drugs
(AED) given to patients with brain tumors to prevent brain-tumor related
I have found seven RCT that investigated this subject. Similarly, I have
found nine retrospective studies examining this topic by going through
patient records.

Can I pool the data from the RCT and RS into my matrix (AED/no AED vs.
seizures/no seizures) and conduct my meta-analysis based on these data?

And lastly, are you familiar to any (epidemiological/biostatistic) studies
addressing this specific topic on combining RCT and RS?

Thank you in advance


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