Background In Colombia, ischemic heart disease was the leading cause of death in people over 55 years of age. In the next five years, the Colombian population over 45 years of age will triple leading to an increase in the incidence and prevalence of atherosclerotic heart disease. Under this scenario, the Colombian Ministry of Health commissioned us the development of a clinical practice guideline (CPG) for the comprehensive treatment of patients with acute coronary syndrome (ACS). Therefore, as part of this process we conducted a systematic review and a quality appraisal of the published CPGs for this condition.
Methods By undertaking a systematic search of multiple databases, reviewing the reference lists of included studies and the input of experts, we identified CPG for ACS with and without ST elevation, published from 2005 to 2011. We assessed the quality of each guideline using the AGREE II instrument.
Results We identified 121 CPG and assessed the quality of 28 that met the inclusion criteria. The overall average for the 28 guides in all domains was: clarity of presentation 91%, reach and objectives 78%, methodological rigour 72%, stakeholder involvement 62%, editorial independence 72%, and applicability 44%. 11 of 28 guidelines had a low methodological rigour (score less than 60%).
Discussion The applicability of the guideline, that is, to provide clear identification of tools to implement the recommendations of the guideline, should be strengthened in the CPG for SCA.