Key Issues in Designing Epidemiologic and Clinical Studies in Orthodontics

  • Argy Polychronopoulou


This chapter addresses key issues related to the design of epidemiologic studies as they apply to research in orthodontics. First, the fundamental measures of epidemiology and measures derived from them to quantify causal effects are presented. In addition, basic epidemiologic study design strategies as well as their strengths and limitations are explored. Lastly, sources of error both in epidemiologic study design and methods of error control and evaluation are described. Emphasis is placed on epidemiologic principles and concepts without resorting to mathematical notation.


Random Error Cumulative Incidence Information Bias Disease Occurrence Period Prevalence 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


  1. 1.
    McMahon B, Trichopoulos D (1996) Epidemiology: principles and methods, 2nd edn. Little, Brown and Co, BostonGoogle Scholar
  2. 2.
    Rothman KJ (2002) Epidemiology: an introduction. Oxford University Press, New YorkGoogle Scholar
  3. 3.
    Aschengrau A, Seage GR III (2003) Essentials of epidemiology in public health. Jones and Barlett Publishers, SudburyGoogle Scholar
  4. 4.
    Elandt-Johnson RC (1975) Definition of rates: some remarks on their use and misuse. Am J Epidemiol 102:267–271PubMedGoogle Scholar
  5. 5.
    Rothman KJ, Greenland S (1998) Modern epidemiology, 2nd edn. Lippincott-Raven, PhiladelphiaGoogle Scholar
  6. 6.
    Miettinen OS (1974) Proportion of disease caused or prevented by a given exposure, trait or intervention. Am J Epidemiol 99:325–332PubMedGoogle Scholar
  7. 7.
    Hennekens C, Buring J (1987) Epidemiology in medicine, 1st edn. Little, Brown and Co, BostonGoogle Scholar
  8. 8.
    Last JM (2001) A dictionary of epidemiology, 4th edn. Oxford University Press, New YorkGoogle Scholar
  9. 9.
    Antczak-Bouckoms AA (1998) The anatomy of clinical research. Clin Orthod Res 1:75–79PubMedGoogle Scholar
  10. 10.
    Grimes DA, Schulz KF (2002) Cohort studies: marching towards outcomes. Lancet 359:341–345PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. 11.
    Schulz KF, Grimes DA (2002) Case-control studies: research in reverse. Lancet 359:431–434PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. 12.
    Bland JB, Altman DG (2000) The odds ratio. Br Med J 320:1468CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. 13.
    Peto R, Pike MC, Armitage P et al (1976) Design and analysis of randomized clinical trials requiring prolonged observation of each patient.I. Introduction and design. Br J Cancer 34:585–612PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. 14.
    Gore SM (1981) Assessing clinical trials: why randomise? Br Med J 282:1958–1960CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. 15.
    Salas M, Hofman A, Stricker BH (1999) Confounding by indication: an example of variation in the use of epidemiologic terminology. Am J Epidemiol 149:981–983PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. 16.
    Steen Law SL, Southard KA, Law AS, Logan HL, Jakobsen JR (2000) An evaluation of ­preoperative ibuprofen for treatment of pain associated with orthodontic separator placement. Am J Orthod Dentofacial Orthop 118:629–635PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. 17.
    Kenealy PM, Kingdon A, Richmond S, Shaw WC (2007) The Cardiff dental study: a 20-year critical evaluation of the psychological health gain from orthodontic treatment. Br J Health Psychol 12:17–49PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. 18.
    Rothe LE, Bollen AM, Little RM, Herring SW, Chaison JB, Chen CS, Hollender LG (2006) Trabecular and cortical bone as risk factors for orthodontic relapse. Am J Orthod Dentofacial Orthop 130:476–484PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. 19.
    Greenland S (1977) Response and follow-up bias in cohort studies. Am J Epidemiol 106:184–187PubMedGoogle Scholar
  20. 20.
    Greenland S, Robins JM (1985) Confounding and misclassification. Am J Epidemiol 122:495–506PubMedGoogle Scholar
  21. 21.
    Rosner B (2000) Fundamentals of biostatistics, 5th edn. Duxbury Thompson Learning, Pacific GroveGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Preventive and Community DentistrySchool of Dentistry, University of AthensAthensGreece

Personalised recommendations