Understanding and using sensitivity, specificity and predictive values

Indian J Ophthalmol. 2008 Jan-Feb;56(1):45-50. doi: 10.4103/0301-4738.37595.


In this article, we have discussed the basic knowledge to calculate sensitivity, specificity, positive predictive value and negative predictive value. We have discussed the advantage and limitations of these measures and have provided how we should use these measures in our day-to-day clinical practice. We also have illustrated how to calculate sensitivity and specificity while combining two tests and how to use these results for our patients in day-to-day practice.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Eye Diseases / diagnosis*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Predictive Value of Tests*
  • Sensitivity and Specificity*