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Table 3 Criteria list for determining the level of evidence for best evidence synthesis, adapted from Lievense et al. [6,7]

From: Could low grade bacterial infection contribute to low back pain? A systematic review

Level of evidence Criteria for inclusion in best evidence synthesis
Strong evidence Generally consistent findings in multiple high quality cohort studies
Moderate evidence Generally consistent findings in 1 high quality cohort study, >2 high quality case–control studies, or >3 high quality case–control studies
Limited evidence Generally consistent findings in a single cohort study, 1 or 2 case–control studies, or multiple cross-sectional studies
Conflicting evidence Inconsistent findings in <75% of the trials
No evidence No studies could be found