Don't Middle Your MIDs

Regression to the Mean Shrinks Estimates of Minimally Important Differences

Published in: Quality of Life Research, v. 23, no. 1, Feb. 2014, p. 1-4

Posted on RAND.org on February 01, 2014

by Peter M. Fayers, Ron D. Hays

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Minimal important differences (MIDs) for patient-reported outcomes (PROs) are often estimated by selecting a clinical variable to serve as an anchor. Then, differences in the clinical anchor regarded as clinically meaningful or important can be used to estimate the corresponding value of the PRO. Although these MID values are sometimes estimated by regression techniques, we show that this is a biased procedure and should not be used; alternative methods are proposed.

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