IBMS BoneKEy | Perspective

Interpretation of randomized controlled trials of fracture prevention

Tuan V Nguyen



The question that a reader of a randomized controlled trial (RCT) is interested in is whether therapy is effective. However, prevailing methodology addresses the opposite question: if the therapy is not effective, what is the chance of obtaining the present (or more extreme) data? This current methodology has generated considerable confusion and misinterpretation in the literature. In this Perspective, an alternative interpretation of major data from RCTs of fracture prevention is offered in light of Bayesian inference, with the hope that this approach will be adopted more often in future clinical research studies of osteoporosis.

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