EASL Clinical Practice Guidelines

Methodology

These EASL recommendations have been prepared by a panel of experts chosen by the EASL Governing Board. The recommendations were approved by the EASL Governing Board. The recommendations have been based as far as possible on evidence from existing publications and presentations at international meetings, and, if evidence was unavailable, the experts' provide personal experiences and opinion. Where possible, the level of evidence and recommendation are cited. The evidence and recommendations have been graded according to the Grading of Recommendations Assessment, Development and Evaluation (GRADE) system. The strength of recommendations thus reflects the quality of underlying evidence. The principles of the GRADE system have been enunciated [15]. The quality of the evidence in the recommendations has been classified into one of three levels: high (A), moderate (B) or low (C). The GRADE system offers two grades of recommendation: strong (1) or weak (2) (Table 1). The recommendations thus consider the quality of evidence: the higher the quality of evidence, the more likely a strong recommendation is warranted; the greater the variability in values and preferences, or the greater the uncertainty, the more likely a weaker recommendation is warranted.

Table 1
Evidence grading used (adapted from the GRADE system).

These recommendations are necessarily based on currently licensed drugs. They will be updated regularly, following approval of new drug regimens by the European Medicines Agency.