"Our mission is to develop and implement core outcome sets in dermatology in order to improve and standardise outcome measurement in clinical trials and to make trial evidence more useful."
The Cochrane Skin Group - Core Outcome Set Initiative (CSG-COUSIN) is a multiprofessional international working group within the Cochrane Skin Group. CSG-COUSIN was initiated by Prof. Jochen Schmitt and Prof. Hywel C. Williams and is co-ordinated by the Center for Evidence-Based Healthcare, University of Dresden, Germany. The CSG-COUSIN inaugural meeting was in March 2015.
Some examples of the high relevance of standardising outcome measurement in clinical trials are: A systematic overview of all 64 CSG reviews (comprising 1566 trials), published until January 2015 showed, that from 402 predefined outcomes in the 64 CSG reviews 131 (33%) outcomes were not reported in a single trial included in these reviews. Furthermore very few of the current set of systematic reviews prepared by the Cochrane Skin Group are able to include a meta-analysis, and when it is possible, it is usually only for a few trials. Another example come from a systematic review on outcomes and measurement instruments in stage IV melanoma trials. In 30 of 42 included randomised controlled and open-label extension trials progression-free survival (PFS) were reported. In seven out of 30 these studies reporting on PFS, a definition was not reported. And based on the remaining 23 trials, a total of 12 different definitions for PFS were extracted by the reviewers.
Currently, approximately 30 clinicians, patient representatives, and researchers are working on several projects within CSG-COUSIN. CSG-COUSIN is a research group that is open for everyone with an interest in outcomes research and evidence-based dermatology and with enthusiasm to develop and implement Core Outcome Sets in dermatology. Please contact us if you want to get involved!