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Evidence-Based Dentistry

Resources to aid oral health providers in making clinical decisions

About EBD

"Evidence-Based Dentistry (EBD) is an approach to oral healthcare that requires the judicious integration of systematic assessments of clinically relevant scientific evidence, relating to the patient's oral and medical condition and history, with the dentist's clinical expertise and the patient's treatment needs and preferences."  (American Dental Association).

Evidence Based Dentistry is the best current scientific evidence and clinical expertise combined with the patient's values and preferences.

Evidence-Based Dentistry Venn Diagram from the Journal of the American Dental Association (JADA).

5 Step EBD Process

The EBD process follows 5 steps:

  1. Ask Converting information needs/problems into clinical questions so that they can be answered
  2. Acquire Conducting a computerized search with maximum efficiency for finding the best external evidence with which to answer the question
  3. Appraise Critically appraising the evidence for its validity and usefulness (clinical applicability)
  4. Apply Applying the results of the appraisal or evidence, in clinical practice
  5. Assess Evaluating the process and examining outcomes

The 5 A’s for EBD are identified in:
Richards D, Clarkson J, Matthews D, Niederman R. Evidence-Based Dentistry: Managing Information for Better Practice. London; Chicago: Quintessence Pub; 2008.

This image “The 5 A’s” by the Medical Library Association Dental Section can be reused under the CC BY-NC-SA license


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Hannah Schilperoort
Herman Ostrow School of Dentistry of USC
Wilson Dental Library
925 W. 34th Street, DEN 21
Los Angeles, CA 90089-0641

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