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Contemporary Clinical Trials Communications


In group or cluster-randomized trials (GRTs), matching is a technique that can be used to improve covariate balance. When baseline data are available, we suggest a strategy that can be used to achieve the desired balance between treatment and control groups across numerous potential confounding variables. This strategy minimizes the overall within-pair Mahalanobis distance; and involves iteratively: 1) making pairs that minimize the distance between pairs of clusters with respect to potentially confounding variables; 2) visually assessing the potential effects of these pairs and resulting possible randomizations; and 3) reweighting variables of selecting weights to make pairs of clusters. In step 2, we plot the between-arm differences with a parallel-coordinates plot. Investigators can compare plots of different weighting schemes to determine the one that best suits their needs prior to the actual, final, randomization. We demonstrate application of the approach with the Mupirocin-Iodophor Swap Out trial. A webapp is provided.


sturdevant, s gwynn/0000-0002-1185-8446





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Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.


National Institutes of Health CommonContemporary FundUnited States Department of Health & Human ServicesNational Institutes of Health (NIH) - USA [UH2/UH3 AT007769]