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Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine
Volume 2012, Article ID 732195, 7 pages
Research Article

Reliability and External Validity of AMSTAR in Assessing Quality of TCM Systematic Reviews

1Department of Evidence-Based Medicine and Clinical Epidemiology, West China Hospital, Sichuan University, Chengdu 610041, China
2Department of Medical Information, Zigong Third People’s Hospital of Zigong City, 643000 Zigong, China

Received 1 October 2011; Revised 29 November 2011; Accepted 6 December 2011

Academic Editor: Alfredo Vannacci

Copyright © 2012 Deying Kang et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Objective. The aim of this study is to measure the reliability and external validity of AMSTAR by applying it to a sample of TCM systematic reviews. Study Design and Methods. We tested the agreement, reliability, construct validity, and feasibility of AMSTAR through comparisons with OQAQ. Statistical analyses were performed by using SPSS 13.0. Results. A random of sample with 41 TCM systematic reviews was selected from a database. The interrater agreement of the individual items of AMSTAR was moderate with a mean kappa of 0.50 (95% CI: 0.26, 0.73). The ICC for AMSTAR against OQAQ (total score of 9 items, excluding item 10) was 0.87 (95% CI: 0.76, 0.93). Conclusions. Although there is room for improvement on few items, the new tool is reliable, valid, and easy to use for methodological quality assessment of systematic reviews on TCM.