Methods for handling missing data in serially sampled sputum specimens for mycobacterial culture conversion calculation

Samantha Malatesta, Isabelle R. Weir, Sarah E. Weber, Tara C. Bouton, Tara Carney, Danie Theron, Bronwyn Myers, C. Robert Horsburgh, Robin M. Warren, Karen R. Jacobson & Laura F. White
Abstract Background The occurrence and timing of mycobacterial culture conversion is used as a proxy for tuberculosis treatment response. When researchers serially sample sputum during tuberculosis studies, contamination or missed visits leads to missing data points. Traditionally, this is managed by ignoring missing data or simple carry-forward techniques. Statistically advanced multiple imputation methods potentially decrease bias and retain sample size and statistical power. Methods We analyzed data from 261 participants who provided weekly sputa for...
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