Example: Problem with empiricism

I am reluctant to miss a day of posting, but am still developing my post on inductive inference. So for today I will ask you to consider two treatments that have never been subjected to randomized controlled trials, that the evidence for their usefulness is therefore not good enough for inclusion in most systematic reviews, and considered at quite a low level of any empirical evidence hierarchies. From a purely EBP framework for practice, these treatments do not have the sort of evidence that is lauded as the best evidence possible.

  1. Heimlich manuever to dislodge an obstructed airway

  2. Defibrillation for a fibrillating heart

How do we justify their use in practice? Should either of these be subjected to a double blinded randomized controlled trial?



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