Also found in: Dictionary, Encyclopedia, Wikipedia.
any systematic method that uses statistical analysis to integrate the data from a number of independent studies.
meta-analysis/meta-anal·y·sis/ (met″ah-ah-nal´ĭ-sis) a systematic method that takes data from a number of independent studies and integrates them using statistical analysis.
a systematic method of evaluating statistical data based on results of several independent studies of the same problem.
meta analysisA method that uses statistical techniques to combine results from different studies and obtain a quantitative estimate of the overall effect of a particular intervention or variable on a defined outcome—i.e., it is a statistical process for pooling data from many clinical trials to glean a clear answer. Meta-analysis produces a stronger conclusion than can be provided by any individual study.
Bias, potential for analytical sloppiness, lack of understanding of basic issues, failure to consider major covariates, and overstating the strengths and precision of the results.