Generating and Assessing Evidence for Nursing Practice

Generating and Assessing Evidence for Nursing Practice

Generating and Assessing Evidence for Nursing Practice

In order to produce evidence-based practice (EBP), nurses need to be familiar with how to search and evaluate existing research literatures so it can be used as valuable information in pursuing an endeavor.  According to Polit and Beck (2017), Sigma Theta Tau International defines EBP as “the process of shared decision making between practitioner, patient and others significant to them based on research evidence, the patient’s experiences and preferences, clinical expertise or know-how, and other available robust sources of information” (p.22). There are many barriers present with EBP; one problem is the limited availability of high-quality research evidence for some practice areas (Polit & Beck, 2017). One way to organize the different types of evidence involved in evidence-based practice research is by the levels of evidence. The Levels of Evidence Pyramid illustrates the three different resources that can be used for EBP: filtered, unfiltered, and background information or expert opinion  (Walden University, 2012). Generating and Assessing Evidence for Nursing Practice

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My initial PICOT question asked: what is the effect of administering a lidocaine nebulizer treatment prior to NG tube insertion, compared to the use of lidocaine lubricant in providing a decrease in the amount of pain the patient will experience upon NG tube insertion.  The keywords that I used with my literature and database search were as follows: lidocaine, nebulizer, nasogastric, insertion, and prior.

In my search I was unsuccessful in finding any relevant articles or research using the filtered resource databases for systematic review and critically-appraised topics; even with using all of the listed database options. I was however able to get 15 hits using the ACP Journal Club database with limitations of those published from years 1996-2015 and were scholarly and peer-reviewed. With further limitation based on relevance, 4 out of 15 articles were yielded.

I used CINAHL Plus when searching for unfiltered resources. Using the same keywords and using the same limitations and exclusions, I was able to get 26 hits and yielded 21 useful articles for the research.

Filtered resources appraise the quality of studies and often make recommendations for practice (Walden University, 2012). Not having much success in finding filtered resources, I felt like my research may hit a brick wall. Having access to unfiltered resources gave me a sense of relief. According to the Levels of Evidence (2012), you may not always be able to find information on your topic in the filtered literature. Using unfiltered information gives a researcher the role of sorting out the articles and determining if the information presented is relevant or not. Generating and Assessing Evidence for Nursing Practice

One of the most common searching methods is Boolean Searching; also called keyword searching. This type of search tells the database to retrieve all of the records in the database that contain a specific word or a set of words. By using the most appropriate keywords and phrases, the more irrelevant information can be excluded.

Polit, D. F. & Beck, C. T. (2017). Nursing Research: Generating and assessing evidence            for nursing practice (10th ed.). Philadelphia, PA: Wolters Kluwer.


Walden University Library (2012). Evidence-Based Practice Research: Levels of            Evidence Pyramid. Walden Library. Retrieved from and Assessing Evidence for Nursing Practice


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