Table 3

Processes of narrative synthesis

Preliminary synthesis
  • Data on views of diabetes care tabulated by theme from a subsample of papers

  • Reading/re-reading wider sample of papers to explore/develop thematic analysis and similarities/differences across participant groups

  • Creation of a conceptual map summarising emerging themes

Exploration of relationships within and between studies
  • All papers tabulated by study characteristics, quality and data answering the synthesis question (labelled by participant group— children, young people or young adults, parents, clinicians) (see online supplementary appendix 6)

  • From this, core themes identified for each group, using constant comparison of data within groups to identify patterns of similarity and difference.

  • Data clustered by group and theme to explore similarities and differences in priorities and experiences across participant groups

  • Content analysis of numbers of studies, participants in each group and range of aspects of care explored for each

Exploration of robustness
  • Comparison of findings from the exploration of relationships with findings from the preliminary synthesis

  • Discussion across the research team to resolve differences