Calibrating Validation Samples when Accounting for Measurement Error in Intervention Studies

Abstract

Many lifestyle intervention trials depend on collecting self-reported outcomes, like dietary intake, to assess the intervention’s effectiveness. Self-reported outcomes are subject to measurement error, which impacts treatment effect estimation. External validation studies measure both self-reported outcomes and accompanying biomarkers, and can be used to account for measurement error. However, in order to account for measurement error using an external validation sample, an assumption must be made that the inferences are transportable from the validation sample to the intervention trial of interest. This assumption does not always hold. In this paper, we propose an approach that adjusts the validation sample to better resemble the trial sample, and we also formally investigate when bias due to poor transportability may arise. Lastly, we examine the method performance using simulation, and illustrate them using PREMIER, a lifestyle intervention trial measuring self-reported sodium intake as an outcome, and OPEN, a validation study measuring both self-reported diet and urinary biomarkers.

Publication
Statistical Methods in Medical Research