Interval censoring

Stat Methods Med Res. 2010 Feb;19(1):53-70. doi: 10.1177/0962280209105023. Epub 2009 Aug 4.


Interval-censored failure time data occur in many medical investigations as well as other studies such as demographical and sociological studies. They include the usual right-censored failure time data as a special case but provide much more complex structure and less relevant information than the right-censored data. This article reviews some basic concepts, issues and the corresponding statistical approaches related to the analysis of interval-censored data as well as recent advances. In particular, we discuss estimation of a survival function, comparison of several treatments and regression analysis as well as competing risks analysis and truncation in the presence of interval censoring. A well-known example of interval-censored data is described and analysed to illustrate some of the statistical procedures discussed.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome / mortality
  • Humans
  • Neoplasms / mortality
  • Neoplasms / radiotherapy
  • Neoplasms / therapy
  • Regression Analysis*
  • Risk Assessment / statistics & numerical data
  • Statistics, Nonparametric
  • Survival Analysis*