Lower confidence bounds for time to cure

Oxford University Press
Publication Type:
Journal Article
Biometrika, 1993, 80 (3), pp. 681 - 687
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Clinicians often wish to know if and when patients with cancer or other life-threatening diseases can be considered cured. Although some parametric approaches are available, no nonparametric methods exist for treating this question. Here, a nonparametric procedure based on the definition that cure occurs when the hazard for death among patients is-no longer greater than the hazard among subjects in the general, population with similar age and demographic characteristics is developed. It is argued that the use of a fully nonparametric approach cannot lead to a nontrivial upper confidence bound for time to cure, and an approach to computing lower confidence bounds for time to cure is developed and applied to data from a clinical trial in colorectal cancer.
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