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Thread: Rows or columns?

  1. #1
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    Rows or columns?




    In a clinical statistics workshop we were given this question? Can anyone help me, I've been tearing my hair about it:

    A case control study of risk factors for testicle cancer identified heavy smoking, as one of the major risk factors.

    Results:

    ------------Heavy_smoker
    -----------|No | Yes |-------Total
    Cancer---+----------------------+-
    No-------|650 | 105 |-------755
    Yes------|100 | 90 |---------190
    -----------+----------------------+----------
    Total-----|750| 195 |--------945

    Row and column probabilities can be calculated for table above, but only one of these alternatives is meaningful. Which and why?

  2. #2
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    Re: Rows or columns?


    I suppose that you should decide what is more meaningful,
    either to know a) how many % of smokers got cancer compared
    with non-smokers, or b) to know the proportion of smokers in
    cancer patients versus proportion of smokers in other subjects.
    i.e., is cancer supposed a risk factor for smoking, or is smoking
    a risk factor for cancer?

    HTH

    P.

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