Skip to main page content
Access keys NCBI Homepage MyNCBI Homepage Main Content Main Navigation
. 2019 Apr;172:103-116.
doi: 10.1016/j.cmpb.2019.02.014. Epub 2019 Feb 25.

Online Relative Risks/Rates Estimation in Spatial and Spatio-Temporal Disease Mapping


Online Relative Risks/Rates Estimation in Spatial and Spatio-Temporal Disease Mapping

Aritz Adin et al. Comput Methods Programs Biomed. .


Background and objective: Spatial and spatio-temporal analyses of count data are crucial in epidemiology and other fields to unveil spatial and spatio-temporal patterns of incidence and/or mortality risks. However, fitting spatial and spatio-temporal models is not easy for non-expert users. The objective of this paper is to present an interactive and user-friendly web application (named SSTCDapp) for the analysis of spatial and spatio-temporal mortality or incidence data. Although SSTCDapp is simple to use, the underlying statistical theory is well founded and all key issues such as model identifiability, model selection, and several spatial priors and hyperpriors for sensitivity analyses are properly addressed.

Methods: The web application is designed to fit an extensive range of fairly complex spatio-temporal models to smooth the very often extremely variable standardized incidence/mortality risks or crude rates. The application is built with the R package shiny and relies on the well founded integrated nested Laplace approximation technique for model fitting and inference.

Results: The use of the web application is shown through the analysis of Spanish spatio-temporal breast cancer data. Different possibilities for the analysis regarding the type of model, model selection criteria, and a range of graphical as well as numerical outputs are provided.

Conclusions: Unlike other software used in disease mapping, SSTCDapp facilitates the fit of complex statistical models to non-experts users without the need of installing any software in their own computers, since all the analyses and computations are made in a powerful remote server. In addition, a desktop version is also available to run the application locally in those cases in which data confidentiality is a serious issue.

Keywords: Areal data; Disease mapping; R-INLA; Shiny; Small areas; Spatio-temporal models.

Similar articles

See all similar articles

LinkOut - more resources