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[IP] Good Planning and Statistics - Jim H.


A while ago you mentioned confounding variables in research studies.

Other than "good planning" is there a common term used to set up the 
research "environment" so that testing of a premise can be accomplished?

Specifically, related to the DCCT I have heard that 99% of the subjects 
completed the study.   I also understand the 1% included one or more 
deaths.....   Any idea how the DCCT compares in subject completion with 
other studies of similar duration and number of participants.

After an average of 6.5 years, HbA1c levels averaged 7.2 in the intensive 
and 9.1 in the conventional treatment groups. DCCT results showed that the 
intensive control group had greatly reduced diabetic eye, nerve, and kidney 
disease compared to conventional therapy. When the DCCT ended in 1993, 
subjects who had received conventional treatment were taught intensive 
treatment, and all participants were encouraged to use intensive treatment. 
Participants then returned to the health care system.

The striking new finding is that people who received intensive therapy 
during DCCT continued to have a lower risk of eye and kidney disease than 
those who had been on conventional treatment, even though both groups' 
HbA1c values leveled off at about 8 percent during 1994 to 1998, the first 
4 years of EDIC.
The preceding paragraphs were extracted from: 

Looking at the A1c values I wonder what type of "environment" enabled the 
intensive treatment group to maintain lower values for a long period of 
time.  I ask while looking at how much the average climbed during the first 
4 years of EDIC...........

Since the DCCT results were so conclusive (study stopped early), might 
there have been an ethical situation of continuing the study with a 
"conventional treatment group"?

I think there was more to the treatment protocol than is apparent.

Take what you like and leave the rest,

Jim S.
email @ redacted
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