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Nonparametric estimation of the sojourn time distributions for a multipath model

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Summary.

We use a multipath (multistate) model to describe data with multiple end points. Statistical inference based on the intermediate end point is challenging because of the problems of nonidentifiability and dependent censoring. We study nonparametric estimation for the path probability and the sojourn time distributions between the states. The methodology proposed can be applied to analyse cure models which account for the competing risk of death. Asymptotic properties of the estimators proposed are derived. Simulation shows that the methods proposed have good finite sample performance. The methodology is applied to two data sets.
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Keywords: Competing risks; Cure models; Dependent censoring; Identifiability; Illness–death models; Long-term survivors; Multiple end points; Semicompeting risks; Susceptibility

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: November 1, 2003

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