Estimation in meta-analyses of response ratios

Bakbergenuly, Ilyas, Hoaglin, David C and Kulinskaya, Elena (2020) Estimation in meta-analyses of response ratios. BMC Medical Research Methodology, 20 (1). ISSN 1471-2288

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BACKGROUND: For outcomes that studies report as the means in the treatment and control groups, some medical applications and nearly half of meta-analyses in ecology express the effect as the ratio of means (RoM), also called the response ratio (RR), analyzed in the logarithmic scale as the log-response-ratio, LRR. METHODS: In random-effects meta-analysis of LRR, with normal and lognormal data, we studied the performance of estimators of the between-study variance, τ2, (measured by bias and coverage) in assessing heterogeneity of study-level effects, and also the performance of related estimators of the overall effect in the log scale, λ. We obtained additional empirical evidence from two examples. RESULTS: The results of our extensive simulations showed several challenges in using LRR as an effect measure. Point estimators of τ2 had considerable bias or were unreliable, and interval estimators of τ2 seldom had the intended 95% coverage for small to moderate-sized samples (n<40). Results for estimating λ differed between lognormal and normal data. CONCLUSIONS: For lognormal data, we can recommend only SSW, a weighted average in which a study's weight is proportional to its effective sample size, (when n≥40) and its companion interval (when n≥10). Normal data posed greater challenges. When the means were far enough from 0 (more than one standard deviation, 4 in our simulations), SSW was practically unbiased, and its companion interval was the only option.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: between-study variance,heterogeneity,log-response-ratio,meta-analysis,random-effects model,ratio of means,epidemiology,health informatics ,/dk/atira/pure/subjectarea/asjc/2700/2713
Faculty \ School: Faculty of Science > School of Computing Sciences
UEA Research Groups: Faculty of Science > Research Groups > Norwich Epidemiology Centre
Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences > Research Groups > Norwich Epidemiology Centre
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Depositing User: LivePure Connector
Date Deposited: 03 Nov 2020 01:07
Last Modified: 21 Apr 2023 00:49
DOI: 10.1186/s12874-020-01137-1


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