More is exponentially less: marginal utility in critical care research




Clinical trials, Critical care, Intensive care, Marginal utility, Cognitive bias


BACKGROUND: Randomized clinical trials (RCT) in critical care mostly return negative results. The research community discusses strategies to improve RCTs design. METHODS: This paper presents a theoretical framework based on marginal utility to treat the problems of hypothesis generation and treatment effects valuation and presents recently published high-quality studies as instances where such a framework predicts irrelevant findings. RESULTS: Blindness to marginal utility, i.e., inobservance of the marginal utility of the proposed intervention, is common in critical care RCTs. CONCLUSION: Critical care RCTs are usually blind to marginal utility and are, therefore, prone to produce irrelevant findings.


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How to Cite

Leite, R. O. (2022). More is exponentially less: marginal utility in critical care research . Journal of Evidence-Based Healthcare, 4, e4722.



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