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The Effect of Multiple Imputation of Routine Pathology Variables on Laboratory Diagnosis of Hepatitis C Infection




Menon, N.
Lidbury, B. A.
Richardson, Alice

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Pathology tests are central to modern healthcare in terms of diagnosis and patient management. Aggregated pathology results provide opportunities for research into fundamental and applied questions in health and medicine, but data analytic challenges appear since test profiles vary between medical practitioners, resulting in missing data. In this study we provide an analytical investigation of the laboratory diagnosis of Hepatitis C (HCV) infection and focus on how to maximize the predictive value of routine pathology data. We recommend using the Influx - Outflux measures to help construct the imputation model when using multiple imputation. Data from 14,320 community-patients aged 15 - 100 years were accessed via ACT Pathology (The Canberra Hospital, Australia). Influx and Outflux were calculated to identify which variables were potentially powerful predictors of missing values. Available Case analysis and Multiple Imputation were used to accommodate missing values in the dataset. Logistic regression model and stepwise selection method were used for analysing the imputed datasets. The predictive power of all methods was compared. The predictive power of the models on multiply imputed data was similar to the power of the models based on complete data. The advantage of multiply imputed data was that it allowed for the inclusion of all the completed variables in the logistic models, thus identifying a broader selection of test results that could lead to the enhanced laboratory prediction of HCV. Multiple imputation is an important statistical resource allowing all individuals in a study to contribute whatever data they have supplied to the analysis. MI in combination with the values of Influx and Outflux identifies potential predictors of HepC infection. Variables age, gender and alanine aminotransferase have been shown to be strong laboratory predictors of HCV infection.



Hepatitis, logistic regression, multiple imputation





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Open Access

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Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License



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