European Academy of Neurology guidance for developing and reporting clinical practice guidelines on rare neurological diseases


Aleksovska K., Kobulashvili T., Costa J., Zimmermann G., Ritchie K., Reinhard C., ...More

EUROPEAN JOURNAL OF NEUROLOGY, 2022 (Journal Indexed in SCI) identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Publication Date: 2022
  • Doi Number: 10.1111/ene.15267
  • Title of Journal : EUROPEAN JOURNAL OF NEUROLOGY
  • Keywords: AGREE, consensus, Delphi, guideline, neurology, rare diseases, recommendation, INTERNATIONAL NETWORK, MANAGEMENT, CONSENSUS, RECOMMENDATIONS, DIAGNOSIS, QUALITY, GRADE, STANDARDS, THERAPY

Abstract

Background and purpose Rare diseases affect up to 29 million people in the European Union, and almost 50% of them affect the nervous system or muscles. Delays in diagnosis and treatment onset and insufficient treatment choices are common. Clinical practice guidelines (CPGs) may improve the diagnosis and treatment of patients and optimize care pathways, delivering the best scientific evidence to all clinicians treating these patients. Recommendations are set for developing and reporting high-quality CPGs on rare neurological diseases (RNDs) within the European Academy of Neurology (EAN), through a consensus procedure. Methods A group of 27 experts generated an initial list of items that were evaluated through a two-step Delphi consensus procedure and a face-to-face meeting. The final list of items was reviewed by an external review group of 58 members. Results The consensus procedure yielded 63 final items. Items are listed according to the domains of the AGREE instruments and concern scope and purpose, stakeholder involvement, rigour of development, and applicability. Additional items consider reporting and ethical issues. Recommendations are supported by practical examples derived from published guidelines and are presented in two tables: (1) items specific to RND CPGs, and general guideline items of special importance for RNDs, or often neglected; (2) items for guideline development within the EAN. Conclusions This guidance aims to provide solutions to the issues specific to RNDs. This consensus document, produced by many experts in various fields, is considered to serve as a starting point for further harmonization and for increasing the quality of CPGs in the field of RNDs.