By Rickett H.W.

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Confidence interval (for time and space related studies), scatter diagrammes, residuals. Heterogeneity affects the validity of results with pooled estimators and the risk of wrong conclusions can be high. Blettner et a!. (1997) recommend sensitivity tests to enhance the stability of the estimator. 2 Data Acquisition for Comparative Epidemiology 31 without the figure. For details of these statistical procedures and equations, we refer to Hunter and Schmidt ( 1990) and Dickers in and Berlin ( 1992).

Vander Plank (1963, 1975; Vanderplank 1982) introduced mathematics to epidemiology and contributed further basic concepts. For example, the differentialdifference equations to describe epidemic growth are now widely used to model epidemics. Van der Plank ( 1963) also deduced the various types of infection rates, descriptive terms like "simple interest disease", "compound interest disease", threshold theorem, cryptic error and endemicity (Sect. 1). His concept of focal and general epidemics (Sect.

For the first inroads an approximate answer from meta-analysis to the right question may be better than nothing. Meta-analysis may at least improve the quality of published and unpublished studies on certain facets in epidemiology. 9). However, doubts about the quality and appropriateness of studies included in a meta analysis can be checked by formal tests of heterogeneity. On the other hand, if scientific rigor is maintained in MA one would, over time, expect consistent and stable results (Dickersin and Berlin 1992).

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Botany for Gardeners by Rickett H.W.

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