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Maximum likelihood estimation for interval-censored data using a Weibull-based accelerated failure time model

Odell, P.M.; Anderson, K.M.; D'Agostino, R.B.

Biometrics 48(3): 951-959

1992

The accelerated failure time regression model is most commonly used with right-censored survival data. This report studies the use of a Weibull-based accelerated failure time regression model when left- and interval-censored data are also observed. Two alternative methods of analysis are considered. First, the maximum likelihood estimates (MLEs) for the observed censoring pattern are computed. These are compared with estimates where midpoints are substituted for left- and interval-censored data (midpoint estimator, or MDE). Simulation studies indicate that for relatively large samples there are many instances when the MLE is superior to the MDE. For samples where the hazard rate is flat or nearly so, or where the percentage or interval-censored data is small, the MDE is adequate. An examples using Framingham Heart Study data is discussed.

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