A comparison of univariate and bivariate models in meta-analysis of diagnostic accuracy studies

Foxlee, Nicola, Stone, Jennifer C. and Doi, Suhail A. R. (2015) A comparison of univariate and bivariate models in meta-analysis of diagnostic accuracy studies. International Journal of Evidence Based Healthcare, 13 1: 28-34. doi:10.1097/XEB.0000000000000037

Author Foxlee, Nicola
Stone, Jennifer C.
Doi, Suhail A. R.
Title A comparison of univariate and bivariate models in meta-analysis of diagnostic accuracy studies
Journal name International Journal of Evidence Based Healthcare   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 1744-1609
Publication date 2015-03
Year available 2015
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1097/XEB.0000000000000037
Open Access Status Not Open Access
Volume 13
Issue 1
Start page 28
End page 34
Total pages 7
Place of publication Philadelphia, United States
Publisher Lippincott Williams and Wilkins
Collection year 2016
Language eng
Formatted abstract
AIM: : An implicit diagnostic threshold has been thought to be the cause of between-study variation in meta-analyses of diagnostic accuracy studies. Bivariate models have been used to account for implicit diagnostic thresholds. However, little difference in estimates of test performance has been reported between univariate and bivariate models. This study aims to undertake another comparison of these two models in order to determine if spectrum effects could better explain the variation across studies.

METHODS: Studies were selected from those provided in Ohle et al.'s meta-analysis and quality scored using QUADAS 2. Univariate analyses of sensitivity and specificity were computed using two models: one bias-adjusted and the other not. The univariate sensitivity and specificity results were compared with the bivariate logit-normal summary ROC method.

RESULTS: Similar results were obtained when using summary ROC and univariate pooling methods for sensitivity and specificity. Differences in study characteristics were found for outlier studies in univariate analyses, suggesting spectrum effects.

CONCLUSION: Univariate pooling methods provide an estimate of test performance for an average disease spectrum which is possibly why results concur with the bivariate models. A better appreciation of such spectrum effects can be demonstrated through univariate analyses, especially when the forest plots are examined in either bias-adjusted or non-bias-adjusted univariate models.
Keyword Diagnostic accuracy studies
Univariate analysis
Bivariate analysis
Meta analysis
Random effect
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Confirmed Code
Institutional Status UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: UQ Library - Scholarly Communication and Digitisation Services
Official 2016 Collection
School of Public Health Publications
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Created: Mon, 13 Jul 2015, 08:47:21 EST by Nicola Foxlee on behalf of Learning and Research Services (UQ Library)