Cascade diagrams for depicting complex interventions in randomised trials

Hooper, Richard, Froud, Robert J, Bremner, Stephen A, Perera, Rafael and Eldridge, Sandra (2013) Cascade diagrams for depicting complex interventions in randomised trials. BMJ, 347. f6681. ISSN 1756-1833

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Abstract

Clarity about how trial interventions are delivered is important for researchers and those who might want to use their results. A new graphical representation aims to help make complex interventions clearer. Many medical interventions—particularly non-pharmacological ones—are complex, consisting of multiple interacting components targeted at different organisational levels. Published descriptions of complex interventions often do not contain enough detail to enable their replication. Reports of behaviour change interventions should include descriptions of setting, mode, intensity, and duration, and characteristics of the participants. Graphical methods, such as that showing the relative timing of assessments and intervention components, may improve clarity of reporting. However, these approaches do not reveal the connections between the different “actors” in a complex intervention.8 Different audiences may want different things from a description of an intervention, but visualising relationships between actors can clarify crucial features such as the fidelity with which the intervention is passed down a chain of actors and possible routes of contamination between treatment arms. Here we describe a new graphical approach—the cascade diagram—that highlights these potential problems.

Item Type: Article
Schools and Departments: Brighton and Sussex Medical School > Brighton and Sussex Medical School
Brighton and Sussex Medical School > Primary Care and Public Health
Depositing User: Jane Hale
Date Deposited: 16 Jun 2015 14:57
Last Modified: 07 Mar 2017 07:27
URI: http://sro.sussex.ac.uk/id/eprint/54578

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