Study design

Section edited by Timothy Beebe

This section considers manuscripts that investigate how choices of research methodology and study design can impact study results, including research participation and study outcomes.

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  1. Research article

    Sample size and power determination when limited preliminary information is available

    We describe a novel strategy for power and sample size determination developed for studies utilizing investigational technologies with limited available preliminary data, specifically of imaging biomarkers. We...

    Christine E. McLaren, Wen-Pin Chen, Thomas D. O’Sullivan, Daniel L. Gillen, Min-Ying Su, Jeon H. Chen and Bruce J. Tromberg

    BMC Medical Research Methodology 2017 17:75

    Published on: 26 April 2017

  2. Research article

    An experimental comparison of web-push vs. paper-only survey procedures for conducting an in-depth health survey of military spouses

    Previous research has found that a “web-push” approach to data collection, which involves contacting people by mail to request an Internet survey response while withholding a paper response option until later ...

    Hope Seib McMaster, Cynthia A. LeardMann, Steven Speigle and Don A. Dillman

    BMC Medical Research Methodology 2017 17:73

    Published on: 26 April 2017

  3. Study protocol

    Protocol for the development of a salutogenic intrapartum core outcome set (SIPCOS)

    Maternity intrapartum care research and clinical care more often focus on outcomes that minimise or prevent adverse health rather than on what constitutes positive health and wellbeing (salutogenesis). This wa...

    Valerie Smith, Deirdre Daly, Ingela Lundgren, Tine Eri, Cecily Begley, Mechthild M. Gross, Soo Downe, Zarko Alfirevic and Declan Devane

    BMC Medical Research Methodology 2017 17:61

    Published on: 19 April 2017

  4. Correspondence

    Practical partnered research to improve weight loss among overweight/obese veterans: lessons from the trenches

    Obesity and obesity-related conditions, such as type 2 diabetes, are a major issue for Veteran health. Veterans Health Administration (VA) researchers and health systems leaders have worked separately and toge...

    Mona AuYoung, Laura J. Damschroder, Linda Kinsinger, Tannaz Moin and Caroline R. Richardson

    BMC Medical Research Methodology 2017 17:50

    Published on: 29 March 2017

  5. Research article

    The effect of postal questionnaire burden on response rate and answer patterns following admission to intensive care: a randomised controlled trial

    The effects of postal questionnaire burden on return rates and answers given are unclear following treatment on an intensive care unit (ICU). We aimed to establish the effects of different postal questionnaire...

    Robert Hatch, Duncan Young, Vicki Barber, David A Harrison and Peter Watkinson

    BMC Medical Research Methodology 2017 17:49

    Published on: 27 March 2017

  6. Research article

    The feasibility of matching on a propensity score for acupuncture in a prospective cohort study of patients with chronic pain

    Propensity scores are typically applied in retrospective cohort studies. We describe the feasibility of matching on a propensity score derived from a retrospective cohort and subsequently applied in a prospect...

    Eric S. Johnson, John F. Dickerson, William M. Vollmer, Alee M. Rowley, Cheryl Ritenbaugh, Richard A. Deyo and Lynn DeBar

    BMC Medical Research Methodology 2017 17:42

    Published on: 16 March 2017

  7. Research article

    Why sample selection matters in exploratory factor analysis: implications for the 12-item World Health Organization Disability Assessment Schedule 2.0

    Sample selection can substantially affect the solutions generated using exploratory factor analysis. Validation studies of the 12-item World Health Organization (WHO) Disability Assessment Schedule 2.0 (WHODAS...

    Cadeyrn J. Gaskin, Sylvie D. Lambert, Steven J. Bowe and Liliana Orellana

    BMC Medical Research Methodology 2017 17:40

    Published on: 11 March 2017

  8. Research Article

    On the censored cost-effectiveness analysis using copula information

    Information and theory beyond copula concepts are essential to understand the dependence relationship between several marginal covariates distributions. In a therapeutic trial data scheme, most of the time, ce...

    Charles Fontaine, Jean-Pierre Daurès and Paul Landais

    BMC Medical Research Methodology 2017 17:27

    Published on: 15 February 2017

  9. Research article

    Self-controlled designs in pharmacoepidemiology involving electronic healthcare databases: a systematic review

    Observational studies are widely used in pharmacoepidemiology. Several designs can be used, in particular self-controlled designs (case-crossover and self-controlled case series). These designs offer the advan...

    Nathalie Gault, Johann Castañeda-Sanabria, Yann De Rycke, Sylvie Guillo, Stéphanie Foulon and Florence Tubach

    BMC Medical Research Methodology 2017 17:25

    Published on: 8 February 2017

  10. Research article

    Testing a systematic approach to identify and prioritise barriers to successful implementation of a complex healthcare intervention

    Multiple barriers may inhibit the adoption of clinical interventions and impede successful implementation. Use of standardised methods to prioritise barriers to target when selecting implementation interventio...

    Louise E. Craig, Leonid Churilov, Liudmyla Olenko, Dominique A. Cadilhac, Rohan Grimley, Simeon Dale, Cintia Martinez-Garduno, Elizabeth McInnes, Julie Considine, Jeremy M. Grimshaw and Sandy Middleton

    BMC Medical Research Methodology 2017 17:24

    Published on: 7 February 2017

  11. Research article

    Estimating the size of the homeless adolescent population across seven cities in Cambodia

    The Government of Cambodia has committed to supporting family care for vulnerable children, including homeless populations. Collecting baseline data on the numbers and characteristics of homeless adolescents w...

    Lindsay Stark, Beth L. Rubenstein, Kimchoeun Pak, Rosemary Taing, Gary Yu, Sok Kosal and Leslie Roberts

    BMC Medical Research Methodology 2017 17:13

    Published on: 26 January 2017

  12. Research article

    Multiple triangulation and collaborative research using qualitative methods to explore decision making in pre-hospital emergency care

    Paramedics make important and increasingly complex decisions at scene about patient care. Patient safety implications of influences on decision making in the pre-hospital setting were previously under-research...

    Maxine Johnson, Rachel O’Hara, Enid Hirst, Andrew Weyman, Janette Turner, Suzanne Mason, Tom Quinn, Jane Shewan and A. Niroshan Siriwardena

    BMC Medical Research Methodology 2017 17:11

    Published on: 24 January 2017

  13. Research article

    Can longitudinal generalized estimating equation models distinguish network influence and homophily? An agent-based modeling approach to measurement characteristics

    Connected individuals (or nodes) in a network are more likely to be similar than two randomly selected nodes due to homophily and/or network influence. Distinguishing between these two influences is an importa...

    Kori Sauser Zachrison, Theodore J. Iwashyna, Achamyeleh Gebremariam, Meghan Hutchins and Joyce M Lee

    BMC Medical Research Methodology 2016 16:174

    Published on: 28 December 2016

  14. Research article

    Sexual Health questions included in the Health Behaviour in School-aged Children (HBSC) Study: an international methodological pilot investigation

    This paper describes the methodological developments of the sexual health items included in the Health Behaviour in School-aged Children (HBSC) study since their mandatory inclusion in the study in 2002. The c...

    Honor Young, András Költő, Marta Reis, Elizabeth M. Saewyc, Nathalie Moreau, Lorraine Burke, Alina Cosma, Béat Windlin, Saoirse Nic Gabhainn and Emmanuelle Godeau

    BMC Medical Research Methodology 2016 16:169

    Published on: 5 December 2016

  15. Research article

    Drug*placebo interaction effect may bias clinical trials interpretation: hybrid balanced placebo and randomized placebo-controlled design

    Conventional randomized placebo-controlled study design assumes the absence of drug*placebo interaction. We hypothesized the presence of such an interaction and that conventionally estimated drug effect might ...

    Muhammad M. Hammami, Safa Hammami, Reem Al-Swayeh, Eman Al-Gaai, Faduma Abdi Farah and Sophia J. S. De Padua

    BMC Medical Research Methodology 2016 16:166

    Published on: 29 November 2016

  16. Research article

    Conducting a large, multi-site survey about patients’ views on broad consent: challenges and solutions

    As biobanks play an increasing role in the genomic research that will lead to precision medicine, input from diverse and large populations of patients in a variety of health care settings will be important in ...

    Maureen E. Smith, Saskia C. Sanderson, Kyle B. Brothers, Melanie F. Myers, Jennifer McCormick, Sharon Aufox, Martha J. Shrubsole, Nanibaá A. Garrison, Nathaniel D. Mercaldo, Jonathan S. Schildcrout, Ellen Wright Clayton, Armand H. Matheny Antommaria, Melissa Basford, Murray Brilliant, John J. Connolly, Stephanie M. Fullerton…

    BMC Medical Research Methodology 2016 16:162

    Published on: 24 November 2016

  17. Research article

    Using cognitive pre-testing methods in the development of a new evidenced-based pressure ulcer risk assessment instrument

    Variation in development methods of Pressure Ulcer Risk Assessment Instruments has led to inconsistent inclusion of risk factors and concerns about content validity. A new evidenced-based Risk Assessment Instr...

    S. Coleman, J. Nixon, J. Keen, D. Muir, L. Wilson, E. McGinnis, N. Stubbs, C. Dealey and E. A. Nelson

    BMC Medical Research Methodology 2016 16:158

    Published on: 16 November 2016

  18. Research article

    Comparing two sampling methods to engage hard-to-reach communities in research priority setting

    Effective community-partnered and patient-centered outcomes research needs to address community priorities. However, optimal sampling methods to engage stakeholders from hard-to-reach, vulnerable communities t...

    Melissa A. Valerio, Natalia Rodriguez, Paula Winkler, Jaime Lopez, Meagen Dennison, Yuanyuan Liang and Barbara J. Turner

    BMC Medical Research Methodology 2016 16:146

    Published on: 28 October 2016

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