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While current guidelines generally recommend single endpoints for primary analyses of confirmatory clinical trials, it is recognized that certain settings require inference on multiple endpoints for comprehensive conclusions on treatment effects. Furthermore, combining treatment effect estimates from several outcome measures can increase the statistical power of tests. Such an efficient use of resources is of special relevance for trials in small populations. This paper reviews approaches based on a combination of test statistics or measurements across endpoints as well as multiple testing procedures that allow for confirmatory conclusions on individual endpoints. We especially focus on feasibility in trials with small sample sizes and do not solely rely on asymptotic considerations. A systematic literature search in the Scopus database, supplemented by a manual search, was performed to identify research papers on analysis methods for multiple endpoints with relevance to small populations. The identified methods were grouped into approaches that combine endpoints into a single measure to increase the power of statistical tests and methods to investigate differential treatment effects in several individual endpoints by multiple testing.
This article was published in the following journal.
Name: Journal of biopharmaceutical statistics
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