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Am Fam Physician. 2014;89(5):334

Author disclosure: No other relevant financial affiliations.

Each month, we feature four POEMs in American Family Physician (AFP)—some in print and some online. And now, insightful discussions about these same POEMs are available as a free podcast via iTunes.

POEMs (patient-oriented evidence that matters) are synopses of research studies that address common problems in primary care. As many readers know, patient-oriented evidence refers to outcomes that matter to patients, such as morbidity, mortality, symptom improvement, cost reduction, and quality of life. This is in contrast to disease-oriented evidence, which relates to surrogate end points that may or may not reflect improvements in patient outcomes (e.g., laboratory test results, physiologic function, pathologic findings).

The podcasts feature a lively, conversational discussion of each study by Dr. Mark Ebell, AFP deputy editor, and Dr. Michael Wilkes, professor of internal medicine at the University of California–Davis School of Medicine. To subscribe to these podcasts, click on the link in AFP's online version or mobile application, or go to the iTunes store and search for “POEM of the Week.” If you have iTunes on your device, go to If not, you can download it for free at

In the near future, we will have links to podcasts of individual POEMs in AFP's online version and mobile application, if you want to listen to the podcast directly after reading the POEM.

If you have suggestions for other podcasts of AFP content, please let us know at We would like to keep you informed about the best evidence for caring for patients in the ways you find useful.

EDITOR'S NOTE: Dr. Ebell is cofounder and editor-in-chief of Essential Evidence Plus, which includes these POEMs and is published by Wiley-Blackwell. Dr. Siwek is editor of AFP.

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