Survival methods, including those using competing risk analysis, are not appropriate for intensive care unit outcome studies

Crit Care. 2006 Feb;10(1):103. doi: 10.1186/cc3949.


The preferred analysis for studies of mortality among patients treated in an intensive care unit should compare the proportions of patients who died during hospitalization. Studies that look for prognostic covariates should use logistic regression. Survival methods, such as the proportional hazards model, or methods based on competing risk analysis are not appropriate because prolonged survival among patients that die during their hospitalization does not benefit the patient and, therefore, should not be measured in the statistical analysis.

Publication types

  • Comment
  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural

MeSH terms

  • Hospital Mortality / trends*
  • Humans
  • Intensive Care Units / statistics & numerical data*
  • Reproducibility of Results
  • Risk Factors
  • Survival Analysis
  • Treatment Outcome