Sequential methods for random-effects meta-analysis

Higgins, Julian P. T. and Whitehead, Anne and Simmonds, Mark (2011) Sequential methods for random-effects meta-analysis. Statistics in Medicine, 30 (9). pp. 903-921. ISSN 1097-0258

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Although meta-analyses are typically viewed as retrospective activities, they are increasingly being applied prospectively to provide up-to-date evidence on specific research questions. When meta-analyses are updated account should be taken of the possibility of false-positive findings due to repeated significance tests. We discuss the use of sequential methods for meta-analyses that incorporate random effects to allow for heterogeneity across studies. We propose a method that uses an approximate semi-Bayes procedure to update evidence on the among-study variance, starting with an informative prior distribution that might be based on findings from previous meta-analyses. We compare our methods with other approaches, including the traditional method of cumulative meta-analysis, in a simulation study and observe that it has Type I and Type II error rates close to the nominal level. We illustrate the method using an example in the treatment of bleeding peptic ulcers.

Item Type: Journal Article
Journal or Publication Title: Statistics in Medicine
Uncontrolled Keywords: /dk/atira/pure/subjectarea/asjc/2600/2613
Departments: Faculty of Science and Technology > Mathematics and Statistics
ID Code: 52168
Deposited By: ep_importer_pure
Deposited On: 20 Dec 2011 16:36
Refereed?: Yes
Published?: Published
Last Modified: 11 Feb 2020 07:57

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