Statistics in Medicine

3rd Edition

Authors: Robert Riffenburgh
Hardcover ISBN: 9780123848642
eBook ISBN: 9780123848659
Imprint: Academic Press
Published Date: 9th July 2012
Page Count: 738
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Statistics in Medicine, Third Edition makes medical statistics easy to understand by students, practicing physicians, and researchers. The book begins with databases from clinical medicine and uses such data to give multiple worked-out illustrations of every method. The text opens with how to plan studies from conception to publication and what to do with your data, and follows with step-by-step instructions for biostatistical methods from the simplest levels (averages, bar charts) progressively to the more sophisticated methods now being seen in medical articles (multiple regression, noninferiority testing). Examples are given from almost every medical specialty and from dentistry, nursing, pharmacy, and health care management. A preliminary guide is given to tailor sections of the text to various lengths of biostatistical courses.

Key Features

  • User-friendly format includes medical examples, step-by-step methods, and check-yourself exercises appealing to readers with little or no statistical background, across medical and biomedical disciplines
  • Facilitates stand-alone methods rather than a required sequence of reading and references to prior text
  • Covers trial randomization, treatment ethics in medical research, imputation of missing data, evidence-based medical decisions, how to interpret medical articles, noninferiority testing, meta-analysis, screening number needed to treat, and epidemiology
  • Fills the gap left in all other medical statistics books between the reader’s knowledge of how to go about research and the book’s coverage of how to analyze results of that research

New in this Edition:

  • New chapters on planning research, managing data and analysis, Bayesian statistics, measuring association and agreement, and questionnaires and surveys
  • New sections on what tests and descriptive statistics to choose, false discovery rate, interim analysis, bootstrapping, Bland-Altman plots, Markov chain Monte Carlo (MCMC), and Deming regression
  • Expanded coverage on probability, statistical methods and tests relatively new to medical research, ROC curves, experimental design, and survival analysis
  • 35 Databases in Excel format used in the book and can be downloaded and transferred into whatever format is needed along with PowerPoint slides of figures, tables, and graphs from the book included on the companion site,
  • Medical subject index offers additional search capabilities


Primary: Clinicians (in all areas of medicine, dentistry, and veterinary) who plan to conduct medical research or at least read and understand research results. Secondary: medical students, fellows and biomedical graduate students taking biostatistics courses for non-statisticians; professors of medical statistics and biostatistics (who are themselves medical statisticians and biostatisticians)

Table of Contents

Dedication 1

Dedication 2

Foreword to the Third Edition

Foreword to the Second Edition

Foreword to the First Edition



How to Use This Book

Chapter 1. Planning Studies

1.1 Organizing a Study

1.2 Stages of Scientific Knowledge

1.3 Science Underlying Clinical Decision Making

1.4 Why Do We Need Statistics?

1.5 Concepts in Study Design

1.6 Study Types

1.7 Convergence with Sample Size

1.8 Sampling Schemes

1.9 Sampling Bias

1.10 How to Randomize a Sample

1.11 How to Plan and Conduct a Study

1.12 Mechanisms to Improve your Study Plan

1.13 Reading Medical Articles

1.14 Where Articles May Fall Short

1.15 Writing Medical Articles

1.16 Statistical Ethics in Medical Studies

Appendix to Chapter 1

Chapter 2. Planning Analysis

2.1 What is in this Chapter

2.2 Notation (or Symbols)

2.3 Quantification and Accuracy

2.4 Data Types

2.5 Multivariable Concepts

2.6 How to Manage Data

2.7 A First Step Guide to Descriptive Statistics

2.8 Setting Up a Test Within a Study

2.9 Choosing the Right Test

2.10 A First Step Guide to Tests of Rates or Averages

2.11 A First Step Guide to Tests of Variability

2.12 A First Step Guide to Tests of Distributions

Appendix to Chapter 2

Chapter 3. Probability and Relative Frequency

3.1 Probability Concepts

3.2 Probability and Relative Frequency

3.3 Graphing Relative Frequency

3.4 Continuous Random Variables

3.5 Frequency Distributions for Continuous Variables

3.6 Probability Estimates from Continuous Distributions

3.7 Probability as Area under the Curve

Chapter 4. Distributions

4.1 Characteristics of a Distribution

4.2 Greek Versus Roman L


No. of pages:
© Academic Press 2012
Academic Press
Hardcover ISBN:
eBook ISBN:

About the Author

Robert Riffenburgh

Robert H. Riffenburgh, PhD, advises on experimental design, statistical analysis, and scientific integrity of the approximately 400 concurrent studies at the Naval Medical Center San Diego. A fellow of the American Statistical Association and Royal Statistical Society, he is former Professor and Head, Statistics Department, University of Connecticut, and has been faculty at Virginia Tech., University of Hawaii, University of Maryland, University of California San Diego, San Diego State University, and University of Leiden (The Netherlands). He has been president of his own consulting firm and performed and directed operations research for the U.S. government and for NATO. He has consulted on biostatistics throughout his career, has received numerous awards, and has published more than 140 professional articles.

Affiliations and Expertise

Naval Medical Center, San Diego, California, U.S.A.


""…a highly recommended book that is ideally suited for clinicians who require a strong foundation of statistics...The chapter on modeling concepts and methods and the chapter on clinical decision based on models are both extremely important for those medical professionals and researchers who work with clinical trials…a very good choice for an easily understood, yet comprehensive textbook to accompany a course on the subject, as well as a textbook for individual learning.""--Graefe's Archive for Clinical and Experimental Ophthalmology, April 2, 2013
""...if you want a single volume that covers statistics in medicine, you can stop looking…The book is written in a practical and common-sense manner…""--Journal of Clinical Research Best Practices, March 2013
""…there are many clear and varied examples with just enough equations and images to serve their purpose.nbsp; For those of us who learn by walking through a problem, this book is a joy…Dr. Riffenburgh’s text can be a welcome addition to any collection of statistics books.""--Laboratory Animal Practitioner, 46(3): 2013
""This is an excellent resource and reference for students, teachers, and medical professionals. It is also an excellent tool for medical investigators on how to plan and design medical research and how to interpret medical literature in this evidence-based medicine era."", June 7, 2013


""Statistics in Medicine, Third Edition makes medical statistics easy to understand for students, practicing physicians, and researchers…Examples are given from almost every medical specialty and from dentistry, nursing, pharmacy, and health care management."", April 24, 2013
""I teach MPH, Preventive Medicine residents, Clinical Science and Population Health Scien