Desideratum for Evidence Based Epidemiology

JM Overhage, PB Ryan, Martijn Schuemie, PE Stang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

18 Citations (Scopus)


Background There is great variation in choices of method and specific analytical details in epidemiological studies, resulting in widely varying results even when studying the same drug and outcome in the same database. Not only does this variation undermine the credibility of the research but it limits our ability to improve the methods. Methods In order to evaluate the performance of methods and analysis choices we used standard references and a literature review to identify 164 positive controls (drug outcome pairs believed to represent true adverse drug reactions), and 234 negative controls (drug outcome pairs for which we have confidence there is no direct causal relationship). We tested 3,748 unique analyses (methods in combination with specific analysis choices) that represent the full range of approaches to adjusting for Discussion We expect the results of this systematic, empirical evaluation of the performance of these analyses across a moderate range of outcomes and databases to provide important insights into the methods used in epidemiological studies and to increase the consistency with which methods are applied, thereby increasing the confidence in results and our ability to systematically improve our approaches.
Original languageUndefined/Unknown
Pages (from-to)S5-S14
JournalDrug Safety
Publication statusPublished - 2013

Research programs

  • EMC NIHES-03-77-02

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