To be able to analyse and determine the reliability and validity of a diagnostic tests for pain, in terms of Kappa scores, sensitivity, specificity, likelihood ratiios, pre-test and post-test odds and probabilities.
To be able to assess the efficacy of a treatment for pain:
- by being familiar the possible statistical tools although not necessarily able to coompute statistics inaided.
- by being able to identify critical issues seminal to the quality of a research paper on treatment.
To be able to compose and present a written critique of a selected article.
Definition of Truth:
Truth in Diagnosis - Reliability, Validity (concept, content, face, construct, therapeutic utility)
Truth in Treatment - Efficacy, sensitivity analysis, confidence intervals, met-analysis, ANOVAs, survival curves, number needed to treat, systematic reviews, odds ratios.
How to read or write a paper on pain. The importance of:
source population, selection bias, drop out, observer bias, security of blinding, power calculation, tests of statistical significance (chi-square, Fisher’s exact test, survival analysis), VAS, psychological measures, cost-effectiveness, study sample, control group, intention to treat analysis, recall bias, independent observer, type I and type II errors, disability, treatment satisfaction, inception period, comparability, outcome measures, blinding, compliance, categorical vs continuous data, clinical significance (snesitivity analysis, NNT), health care utilisation, complications