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Making Sense of DataA Self-Instruction Manual on the Interpretation of Epidemiological Data$
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J. H. Abramson and Z. H. Abramson

Print publication date: 2001

Print ISBN-13: 9780195145250

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2009

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195145250.001.0001

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How Good Are the Measures?

How Good Are the Measures?

(p.129) Section C How Good Are the Measures?
Making Sense of Data

J. H. Abramson

Z. H. Abramson

Oxford University Press

The exercises in this section deal with the accuracy of measures used in epidemiological studies. They cover methods of appraising the validity of measures; the ways in which poor validity can produce biased prevalence, incidence rates, and erroneous conclusions about associations; and methods of making allowance for this bias. Other topics are nondifferential and differential misclassification and their effects, reliability and its appraisal and implications, and regression towards the mean. The section includes exercises on the validity of screening and diagnostic tests. Specific topics include sensitivity, specificity, and related measures, ROC curves, and the meaning of “normal.” A self-test concludes the section.

Keywords:   validity, bias, misclassification, reliability, screening tests, diagnostic tests, sensitivity, specificity, ROC curves, normality

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