Medicine And Books

Bayesian Methods and Ethics in a Clinical Trial Design

BMJ 1997; 314 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.314.7088.1209a (Published 19 April 1997) Cite this as: BMJ 1997;314:1209
  1. Robert A Crouch, doctoral candidate
  1. Joint Centre for Bioethics, University of Toronto, Toronto, Canada

    Ed Joseph B Kadane / John Wiley, £65, pp 318 ISBN 0 471 84680 5

    When confronted with the ubiquitous P value, the statistical novice usually concludes (wrongly) that it represents the answer to the clinically important question “What is the probability that treatment A is superior to treatment B?” Yet classical (frequentist) statistical methods–the standard used in clinical research–do not address this question; Bayesian methods do. Bayesian researchers can formally quantify prior beliefs about relative efficacies of treatments (from previously published literature and from “informal” clinical experience), and they can then update these “priors” …

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