Consumer Network
Consumer & communication strategies

Seeking patient/carer partner for guideline panel on lumbar puncture - Dec 2017-Feb 2018, approx 10 hours total

Skills: Consumer Input, Protocol Development, Question Formulation, Report Writing, Review - Consumer, Summary of Findings Tables

Who are we? 

The BMJ RapidRecs Group is looking for patient/carer partners to be on a guideline panel for a rapid guideline. This project is under the WikiRecs initiative, where our mandate is to translate potentially practice changing evidence into trustworthy, international guidelines in a short time frame, which are developed by a team of clinicians, methodologists, and patients. Our chair and methods editor for the guideline is Dr. Francois Lamontagne ( and Dr. Bram Rochwerg (

What is the project? 

The guideline question is: In patients who receive lumbar puncture for any reason, what is the impact on using pencil point atraumatic needles versus conventional cutting needles on patient-important outcomes (e.g. headache, puncture failure rate/success on first attempt)? 

The WikiRecs initiative is a project with the MAGIC research and innovation program ( Under the WikiRecs initiative, we are doing a series of guidelines with the BMJ, entitled BMJ RapidRecs, described in an editorial and video here: With the BMJ RapidRecs, we have worked with patient partners for five published guidelines, found here:

What is required? 

The ideal person for the guideline would be someone had a lumbar puncture procedure (patient), or someone who cared for such a person (carer). The time commitment would be approximately 2-3 months, and the total active involvement time is approximately 8-10+ hours (depending how involved you would like to be). The tasks include: 1) introduction call about the guideline involvement process and the commitments from the patient/carer partners (30-45 minutes), 2) review and provide feedback on the systematic review protocol, to identify and prioritize patient-important outcomes (45+ minutes), 3) participate in an introductory session to explain the evidence from the systematic review (generated by separate team), and answer any questions you may have (60-90 minutes), 4) participate in a teleconference with the guideline panel (clinicians, methodologists, patient/carer partners) and draft recommendations (120 minutes), and 4) review and provide feedback to the guideline manuscript and decision aids (60+ minutes). All communication is online. This guideline group is international. No specific skills are required - we have worked with partners who had experience with Cochrane systematic reviews, and partners who did not. We provide training and are happy to answer any questions you may have, so that you feel confident contributing to the discussion.

Important note 

WikiRecs and The BMJ have a strict policy regarding financial and professional/intellectual conflicts of interests. All guideline panel members (clinicians, methodologists, patient partners) must be approved by the WikiRecs executive and The BMJ before participating in the project. Our goal is to have a panel that is able to objectively review the evidence and draft recommendations without bias.

Ideal Applicant

Someone had a lumbar puncture procedure (patient), or someone who cared for such a person (carer).

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