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Table 4 Combination of terms with the best optimization of sensitivity and specificity (based on the lowest possible absolute difference between sensitivity and specificity) for detecting mental health content in MEDLINE in 2000 and performance when combined with the best optimization strategy for detecting treatment studies

From: Optimal search strategies for identifying mental health content in MEDLINE: an analytic survey

Search Strategy OVID search* Sensitivity (%) (95% CI) Specificity (%) (95% CI) Precision (%) (95% CI) Accuracy (%) (95% CI)
Best Optimization of Sensitivity and Specificity     
depress:.mp.
OR behav:.mp.
OR exp mental disorders
OR psych:.mp.
(n = 3,277)
89.2 (88.1 to 90.3)
(n = 8,956)
89.7 (89.1 to 90.4)
(n = 3,844)
76.0 (74.7 to 77.4)
(n = 12,233)
89.6 (89.0 to 90.1)
Above strategy "ANDed" with best optimization strategy for detecting methodology sound treatment studies     
randomized controlled trial.pt.
OR randomized.mp.
OR placebo.mp.
(n = 129)
92.3 (87.6 to 96.9)
(n = 3,715)
95.0 (94.2 to 95.7)
(n = 304)
39.0 (33.5 to 44.7)
(n = 3,844)
94.9 (94.2 to 95.6)
  1. *Search strategies are reported using Ovid's search engine syntax for MEDLINE.
  2. : = truncation; mp = multiple posting – term appears in title, abstract, or subject heading; exp = explode, a search term that automatically includes closely related indexing terms; pt = publication type.