Introduction

In this chapter we present the principles of, and approaches to, analysis. A central component of this chapter are the practical issues for the analysis of a typical randomized trial, which should give the practitioner guidance on many aspects of analysis. Within this section there is, in particular, guidance on the analysis and presentation of quality of life data. There is also a statistical methods section which outlines the methods available for different types of data. This section is brief and can be omitted without loss of continuity. The aim is to emphasize principles and limit the number of formulae and equations. For a more detailed technical presentation of these methods the reader is referred to more specialized books, such as Altman [1].

Throughout this chapter, four examples will be used to illustrate some of the methods. The four examples are introduced below.

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