Robust bayesian sensitivity analysis for case-control studies with uncertain exposure misclassification probabilities.

TitleRobust bayesian sensitivity analysis for case-control studies with uncertain exposure misclassification probabilities.
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2015
AuthorsMak TShin Heng, Best N, Rushton L
JournalInt J Biostat
Volume11
Issue1
Pagination135-49
Date Published05/2015
ISSN1557-4679
Abstract

Exposure misclassification in case-control studies leads to bias in odds ratio estimates. There has been considerable interest recently to account for misclassification in estimation so as to adjust for bias as well as more accurately quantify uncertainty. These methods require users to elicit suitable values or prior distributions for the misclassification probabilities. In the event where exposure misclassification is highly uncertain, these methods are of limited use, because the resulting posterior uncertainty intervals tend to be too wide to be informative. Posterior inference also becomes very dependent on the subjectively elicited prior distribution. In this paper, we propose an alternative "robust Bayesian" approach, where instead of eliciting prior distributions for the misclassification probabilities, a feasible region is given. The extrema of posterior inference within the region are sought using an inequality constrained optimization algorithm. This method enables sensitivity analyses to be conducted in a useful way as we do not need to restrict all of our unknown parameters to fixed values, but can instead consider ranges of values at a time.

DOI10.1515/ijb-2013-0044
Alternate JournalInt J Biostat
PubMed ID25720128