▼▲▼▲▼▲▼▲▼▲▼▲▼▲▼▲▼▲▼▲▼▲▼▲▼▲▼▲▼▲▼▲▼▲▼▲▼▲▼ PREFACE The practice of pediatrics requires rapid access to evidence-based information to make timely diagnoses and provide accurate treatment for common condi- tions. This is our deliverable to you in The Pediatric Visit, which focuses on major issues in pediatric gastroenterology. Each chapter emphasizes diagnosis and treatment and includes many figures and tables designed to assist pediatric clinicians in delivering the highest quality of care to patients in the most direct way possible. Understanding medical decision-making is the foundation on which prac- titioners make the right decisions at the right time for patients. We present evidence-based levels of decision support (as appropriate) in each chapter to provide valuable information about the level of evidence for diagnostic testing and evaluation, as well as for different treatment modalities. The levels of evidence in this book are adapted from Harris, Helfand, and Woolf1—Level I: evidence obtained from at least 1 properly designed randomized controlled trial Level II-1: evidence obtained from well-designed controlled trials without randomization Level II-2: evidence obtained from well-designed cohort or case-control analytic studies, preferably from more than 1 center or research group Level II-3: evidence obtained from multiple time series, with or without the intervention (dramatic results from uncontrolled trials also might be regarded as Level II-3) and Level III: opinions of respected authorities based on clinical experience, descriptive studies, or reports from expert committees. We truly appreciate the wonderful guidance and assistance from the American Academy of Pediatrics. Our editor, Carrie Peters, was extremely helpful in the development of this key resource. We hope that you will find this book on pediatric gastroenterology an indis- pensable resource for the evaluation and management of your patients. Leonard G. Feld, MD, PhD, MMM, and John D. Mahan, MD 1 Harris RP, Helfand M, Woolf SH, et al. Current methods of the US Preventive Services Task Force: a review of the process. Am J Prev Med. 2001 20(3 suppl):21–35
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