Epidemiology-Biostatistics Small Group Session 7: Interpreting Data in the Medical Literature
- To enhance the students' abilities to interpret charts, tables and graphs appearing in the medical literature
Outside Preparation: Due in Small Group #7
Read the enclosed articles:
- Clinical And Genetic Features Of Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome Type IV, The Vascular Type; NEJM, March 9, 2000, Vol 342, No 10, pages 673 - 680
- A Comparison Of Enoxaparin With Placebo For The Prevention of Venous Thromboembolism In Acutely Ill Medical Patients; NEJM, September 9, 1999, Vol 341, No 11, pages 793 - 799
- A Prospective Study Of Walking As Compared With Vigorous Exercise In The Prevention Of Coronary Heart Disease In Women; NEJM, August 26, 1999, Vol 341, No 9, pages 650 - 658
Approximate Class Schedule:
|1 hour||Instructor review of key concepts from the course in preparation for Exam 2|
|1 hour||The small group instructor will facilitate a discussion of the charts, graphs and figures in the assigned papers|
To Be Discussed in Small Group Session
A. The following questions pertain to the Ehlers-Danlos paper:
- What is an index patient?
- Based on the data in Table 1 on page 674, is the mean age at ascertainment skewed? If no, why not. If yes, which way is it skewed?
- What is the median age for a first complication based on Figure 1, Panel B on page 676?
- At roughly what age had 70% of the subjects had a first complication, per Panel B on Page 676?
- Based on Figure 2 on page 677, which first complication had a higher number of arterial deaths as a second complication?
B. The following questions pertain to the Enoxaparin paper:
- What does the (78.6) number next to the number 866 mean in the evaluated portion of Table 1 on pate 795?
- Is body mass index in Table 2 on page 796 presented as continuous or discrete data? Why?
- Interpret the relative risks and confidence intervals for venous thromboembolic events under primary outcome appearing in Table 4 on page 797. Are the relative risks for 20 mg of Enoxaparin and 40 mg of Enoxaparin statistically significant? Why?
- Comment on the statement, “The risk of death was lower in the group assigned to 40 mg of Enoxaparin than in the group assigned to placebo (relative risk, 0.83, 95 percent confidence interval, 0.56 to 1.21, P=0.31)” appearing in Figure 1 on page 799.
C. The following questions pertain to the coronary heart disease paper:
- Interpret the number 3 and the number 14,598 appearing in the No. of women portion of Table 1 on page 652.
- Interpret the number 0.8 appearing next to the word median on Table 1 on page 652.
- Interpret the “2.1-4.6" appearing on the range line on Table 1 on page 652.
- Interpret the number 113,419 on the person-yr of follow-up line on Table 2 on page 653.
- Interpret the 0.46 (0.36-0.60) on the age-adjusted portion of Table 2 on page 653.
- Interpret the 0.66 (0.51-0.86) on the multivariate portion of Table 2 on page 653.
- Interpret the 0.34 box and the 0.58 box appearing on Figure 1, Table C on page 654.
- Interpret the I bar appearing on the 0.41 and 0.64 towers on Figure 2 on page 655.