Modeling reciprocal effects in medical research: Critical discussion on the current practices and potential alternative models


Autoři: Satoshi Usami aff001;  Naoya Todo aff002;  Kou Murayama aff003
Působiště autorů: Department of Education, University of Tokyo, Bunkyo-ku, Tokyo, Japan aff001;  Department of Psychology, University of Tsukuba, Tsukuba, Ibaraki, Japan aff002;  Department of Psychology, University of Reading, Reading Berkshire, United Kingdom aff003;  Research Institute, Kochi University of Technology, Kami, Kochi, Japan aff004
Vyšlo v časopise: PLoS ONE 14(9)
Kategorie: Research Article
doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0209133

Souhrn

Longitudinal designs provide a strong inferential basis for uncovering reciprocal effects or causality between variables. For this analytic purpose, a cross-lagged panel model (CLPM) has been widely used in medical research, but the use of the CLPM has recently been criticized in methodological literature because parameter estimates in the CLPM conflate between-person and within-person processes. The aim of this study is to present some alternative models of the CLPM that can be used to examine reciprocal effects, and to illustrate potential consequences of ignoring the issue. A literature search, case studies, and simulation studies are used for this purpose. We examined more than 300 medical papers published since 2009 that applied cross-lagged longitudinal models, finding that in all studies only a single model (typically the CLPM) was performed and potential alternative models were not considered to test reciprocal effects. In 49% of the studies, only two time points were used, which makes it impossible to test alternative models. Case studies and simulation studies showed that the CLPM and alternative models often produce different (or even inconsistent) parameter estimates for reciprocal effects, suggesting that research that relies only on the CLPM may draw erroneous conclusions about the presence, predominance, and sign of reciprocal effects. Simulation studies also showed that alternative models are sometimes susceptible to improper solutions, even when reseachers do not misspecify the model.

Klíčová slova:

Adolescents – Behavior – Child development – Medicine and health sciences – Mental health and psychiatry – Simulation and modeling – Child psychiatry – Adolescent psychiatry


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PLOS One


2019 Číslo 9

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