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Practical methods for incorporating summary time-to-event data into meta-analysis

Tierney, JF; Stewart, LA; Ghersi, D; Burdett, S; Sydes, MR; (2007) Practical methods for incorporating summary time-to-event data into meta-analysis. Trials , 8 , Article 16. 10.1186/1745-6215-8-16. Green open access

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Abstract

Background: In systematic reviews and meta-analyses, time-to-event outcomes are most appropriately analysed using hazard ratios (HRs). In the absence of individual patient data (IPD), methods are available to obtain HRs and/or associated statistics by carefully manipulating published or other summary data. Awareness and adoption of these methods is somewhat limited, perhaps because they are published in the statistical literature using statistical notation.Methods: This paper aims to 'translate' the methods for estimating a HR and associated statistics from published time-to-event-analyses into less statistical and more practical guidance and provide a corresponding, easy-to-use calculations spreadsheet, to facilitate the computational aspects.Results: A wider audience should be able to understand published time-to-event data in individual trial reports and use it more appropriately in meta-analysis. When faced with particular circumstances, readers can refer to the relevant sections of the paper. The spreadsheet can be used to assist them in carrying out the calculations.Conclusion: The methods cannot circumvent the potential biases associated with relying on published data for systematic reviews and meta-analysis. However, this practical guide should improve the quality of the analysis and subsequent interpretation of systematic reviews and meta-analyses that include time-to-event outcomes.

Type: Article
Title: Practical methods for incorporating summary time-to-event data into meta-analysis
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1186/1745-6215-8-16
Publisher version: http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/1745-6215-8-16
Language: English
Additional information: © 2007 Tierney et al; licensee BioMed Central Ltd. This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
Keywords: RANDOMIZED CONTROLLED-TRIALS, PUBLICATION BIAS, CLINICAL-TRIALS, OUTCOMES
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Population Health Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Population Health Sciences > Inst of Clinical Trials and Methodology
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Population Health Sciences > Inst of Clinical Trials and Methodology > MRC Clinical Trials Unit at UCL
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/1304945
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