Analysis of automated administrative and survey databases to study patterns and outcomes of care

Richard A. Deyo, Victoria M. Taylor, Paula Diehr, Douglas Conrad, Daniel C. Cherkin, Marcia Ciol, William Kreuter

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

80 Scopus citations


Large computerized databases often arise from national surveys, insurance claims, and statewide health care registries. These databases are increasingly used to examine patterns of medical cafe and certain outcomes of care and may be helpful in planning clinical trials. They are highly representative of defined populations, but have limited clinical information. Methods have bean developed to identify episodes of low back pain and to quantify the severity of unrelated, comorble medical conditions. Pitfalls in analysis are discussed, including limitations of diagnosis and procedure coding, cross-sections nature of most data, limited clinical detail, and the necessarily observational (not experimental) nature; of any group comparisons. There is growing interest in expanding the clinical information in such databases, for both quality improvement and research purposes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2083-2091
Number of pages9
Issue number18
StatePublished - Sep 1994
Externally publishedYes


  • Automated databases
  • Insurance claims
  • Outcomes research
  • Research methods

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Orthopedics and Sports Medicine
  • Clinical Neurology


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