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Prospective study

 

In evaluations of the effects of healthcare interventions, a study in which people are divided into groups that are exposed or not exposed to the intervention(s) of interest before the outcomes have occurred. Randomised controlled trials are always prospective studies and case control studies never are. Concurrent cohort studies are prospective studies, whereas historical cohort studies are not (see cohort study), although in epidemiology a prospective study is sometimes used as a synonym for cohort study. See retrospective study.