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Studies of disease causation 

Studies of disease causation
Chapter:
Studies of disease causation
Author(s):

Alan J. Silman

, Gary J. Macfarlane

, and Tatiana Macfarlane

DOI:
10.1093/med/9780198814726.003.0008
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date: 28 January 2022

The most important aspect that will influence the validity of any epidemiological study is the careful selection of the subjects for investigation. Separate issues relate to the sampling of subjects for disease status in case–control studies, and sampling by exposure status in cohort studies. In simplest terms, the issues are who should be the cases and, given that, who should be the controls. Thus, in each instance the needs are to identify the sampling frame and then what should be the process for selecting the specific sample or subsamples needed for study. In addition to consideration of who to study, other factors such as how to identify and verify plus the size of the planned study are all topics to be addressed.

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