Correcting for noncompliance and dependent censoring in an AIDS Clinical Trial with inverse probability of censoring weighted (IPCW) log-rank tests

Biometrics. 2000 Sep;56(3):779-88. doi: 10.1111/j.0006-341x.2000.00779.x.


AIDS Clinical Trial Group (ACTG) randomized trial 021 compared the effect of bactrim versus aerosolized pentamidine (AP) as prophylaxis therapy for pneumocystis pneumonia (PCP) in AIDS patients. Although patients randomized to the bactrim arm experienced a significant delay in time to PCP, the survival experience in the two arms was not significantly different (p = .32). In this paper, we present evidence that bactrim therapy improves survival but that the standard intent-to-treat comparison failed to detect this survival advantage because a large fraction of the subjects either crossed over to the other therapy or stopped therapy altogether. We obtain our evidence of a beneficial bactrim effect on survival by artificially regarding the subjects as dependently censored at the first time the subject either stops or switches therapy; we then analyze the data with the inverse probability of censoring weighted Kaplan-Meier and Cox partial likelihood estimators of Robins (1993, Proceedings of the Biopharmaceutical Section, American Statistical Association, pp. 24-33) that adjust for dependent censoring by utilizing data collected on time-dependent prognostic factors.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial
  • Comparative Study
  • Controlled Clinical Trial

MeSH terms

  • AIDS-Related Opportunistic Infections / mortality
  • AIDS-Related Opportunistic Infections / prevention & control*
  • Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome / drug therapy*
  • Aerosols
  • Algorithms
  • Anti-Infective Agents / therapeutic use
  • Biometry / methods
  • Humans
  • Models, Statistical*
  • Multicenter Studies as Topic
  • Pentamidine / administration & dosage
  • Pentamidine / therapeutic use
  • Pneumonia, Pneumocystis / mortality
  • Pneumonia, Pneumocystis / prevention & control*
  • Probability
  • Randomized Controlled Trials as Topic
  • Reproducibility of Results
  • Survival Rate
  • Treatment Refusal*
  • Trimethoprim, Sulfamethoxazole Drug Combination / therapeutic use


  • Aerosols
  • Anti-Infective Agents
  • Pentamidine
  • Trimethoprim, Sulfamethoxazole Drug Combination