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Evaluation of diagnostic tests when there is no gold standard. A review of methods.

Authors
Type
Published Article
Journal
Health technology assessment (Winchester, England)
Publication Date
Volume
11
Issue
50
Identifiers
PMID: 18021577
Source
Medline
License
Unknown

Abstract

The majority of methods try to impute, adjust or construct a reference standard in an effort to obtain the familiar diagnostic accuracy statistics, such as sensitivity and specificity. In situations that deviate only marginally from the classical diagnostic accuracy paradigm, these are valuable methods. However, in situations where an acceptable reference standard does not exist, applying the concept of clinical test validation can provide a significant methodological advance. All methods summarised in this report need further development. Some methods, such as the construction of a reference standard using panel consensus methods and validation of tests outwith the accuracy paradigm, are particularly promising but are lacking in methodological research. These methods deserve particular attention in future research.

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