ROC Curve: A graphic means for assessing the ability of a screening test to discriminate between healthy and diseased persons; may also be used in other studies, e.g., distinguishing stimuli responses as to a faint stimuli or nonstimuli.Area Under Curve: A statistical means of summarizing information from a series of measurements on one individual. It is frequently used in clinical pharmacology where the AUC from serum levels can be interpreted as the total uptake of whatever has been administered. As a plot of the concentration of a drug against time, after a single dose of medicine, producing a standard shape curve, it is a means of comparing the bioavailability of the same drug made by different companies. (From Winslade, Dictionary of Clinical Research, 1992)Sensitivity and Specificity: Binary classification measures to assess test results. Sensitivity or recall rate is the proportion of true positives. Specificity is the probability of correctly determining the absence of a condition. (From Last, Dictionary of Epidemiology, 2d ed)Predictive Value of Tests: In screening and diagnostic tests, the probability that a person with a positive test is a true positive (i.e., has the disease), is referred to as the predictive value of a positive test; whereas, the predictive value of a negative test is the probability that the person with a negative test does not have the disease. Predictive value is related to the sensitivity and specificity of the test.Reproducibility of Results: The statistical reproducibility of measurements (often in a clinical context), including the testing of instrumentation or techniques to obtain reproducible results. The concept includes reproducibility of physiological measurements, which may be used to develop rules to assess probability or prognosis, or response to a stimulus; reproducibility of occurrence of a condition; and reproducibility of experimental results.Biological Markers: Measurable and quantifiable biological parameters (e.g., specific enzyme concentration, specific hormone concentration, specific gene phenotype distribution in a population, presence of biological substances) which serve as indices for health- and physiology-related assessments, such as disease risk, psychiatric disorders, environmental exposure and its effects, disease diagnosis, metabolic processes, substance abuse, pregnancy, cell line development, epidemiologic studies, etc.Algorithms: A procedure consisting of a sequence of algebraic formulas and/or logical steps to calculate or determine a given task.Models, Statistical: Statistical formulations or analyses which, when applied to data and found to fit the data, are then used to verify the assumptions and parameters used in the analysis. Examples of statistical models are the linear model, binomial model, polynomial model, two-parameter model, etc.Prospective Studies: Observation of a population for a sufficient number of persons over a sufficient number of years to generate incidence or mortality rates subsequent to the selection of the study group.Observer Variation: The failure by the observer to measure or identify a phenomenon accurately, which results in an error. Sources for this may be due to the observer's missing an abnormality, or to faulty technique resulting in incorrect test measurement, or to misinterpretation of the data. Two varieties are inter-observer variation (the amount observers vary from one another when reporting on the same material) and intra-observer variation (the amount one observer varies between observations when reporting more than once on the same material).Diagnosis, Computer-Assisted: Application of computer programs designed to assist the physician in solving a diagnostic problem.Retrospective Studies: Studies used to test etiologic hypotheses in which inferences about an exposure to putative causal factors are derived from data relating to characteristics of persons under study or to events or experiences in their past. The essential feature is that some of the persons under study have the disease or outcome of interest and their characteristics are compared with those of unaffected persons.Prognosis: A prediction of the probable outcome of a disease based on a individual's condition and the usual course of the disease as seen in similar situations.Neural Networks (Computer): A computer architecture, implementable in either hardware or software, modeled after biological neural networks. Like the biological system in which the processing capability is a result of the interconnection strengths between arrays of nonlinear processing nodes, computerized neural networks, often called perceptrons or multilayer connectionist models, consist of neuron-like units. A homogeneous group of units makes up a layer. These networks are good at pattern recognition. They are adaptive, performing tasks by example, and thus are better for decision-making than are linear learning machines or cluster analysis. They do not require explicit programming.Logistic Models: Statistical models which describe the relationship between a qualitative dependent variable (that is, one which can take only certain discrete values, such as the presence or absence of a disease) and an independent variable. A common application is in epidemiology for estimating an individual's risk (probability of a disease) as a function of a given risk factor.False Positive Reactions: Positive test results in subjects who do not possess the attribute for which the test is conducted. The labeling of healthy persons as diseased when screening in the detection of disease. (Last, A Dictionary of Epidemiology, 2d ed)Radiography: Examination of any part of the body for diagnostic purposes by means of X-RAYS or GAMMA RAYS, recording the image on a sensitized surface (such as photographic film).Data Interpretation, Statistical: Application of statistical procedures to analyze specific observed or assumed facts from a particular study.Severity of Illness Index: Levels within a diagnostic group which are established by various measurement criteria applied to the seriousness of a patient's disorder.Risk Assessment: The qualitative or quantitative estimation of the likelihood of adverse effects that may result from exposure to specified health hazards or from the absence of beneficial influences. (Last, Dictionary of Epidemiology, 1988)Biometry: The use of statistical and mathematical methods to analyze biological observations and phenomena.Image Interpretation, Computer-Assisted: Methods developed to aid in the interpretation of ultrasound, radiographic images, etc., for diagnosis of disease.Likelihood Functions: Functions constructed from a statistical model and a set of observed data which give the probability of that data for various values of the unknown model parameters. Those parameter values that maximize the probability are the maximum likelihood estimates of the parameters.Diagnostic Techniques, Endocrine: Methods and procedures for the diagnosis of diseases or dysfunction of the endocrine glands or demonstration of their physiological processes.Diagnostic Techniques and Procedures: Methods, procedures, and tests performed to diagnose disease, disordered function, or disability.Epidemiologic Methods: Research techniques that focus on study designs and data gathering methods in human and animal populations.Diagnostic Tests, Routine: Diagnostic procedures, such as laboratory tests and x-rays, routinely performed on all individuals or specified categories of individuals in a specified situation, e.g., patients being admitted to the hospital. These include routine tests administered to neonates.Tumor Markers, Biological: Molecular products metabolized and secreted by neoplastic tissue and characterized biochemically in cells or body fluids. They are indicators of tumor stage and grade as well as useful for monitoring responses to treatment and predicting recurrence. Many chemical groups are represented including hormones, antigens, amino and nucleic acids, enzymes, polyamines, and specific cell membrane proteins and lipids.Radiographic Image Enhancement: Improvement in the quality of an x-ray image by use of an intensifying screen, tube, or filter and by optimum exposure techniques. Digital processing methods are often employed.Risk Factors: An aspect of personal behavior or lifestyle, environmental exposure, or inborn or inherited characteristic, which, on the basis of epidemiologic evidence, is known to be associated with a health-related condition considered important to prevent.Case-Control Studies: Studies which start with the identification of persons with a disease of interest and a control (comparison, referent) group without the disease. The relationship of an attribute to the disease is examined by comparing diseased and non-diseased persons with regard to the frequency or levels of the attribute in each group.Discriminant Analysis: A statistical analytic technique used with discrete dependent variables, concerned with separating sets of observed values and allocating new values. It is sometimes used instead of regression analysis.Computer Simulation: Computer-based representation of physical systems and phenomena such as chemical processes.Time Factors: Elements of limited time intervals, contributing to particular results or situations.Diagnostic Techniques, Ophthalmological: Methods and procedures for the diagnosis of diseases of the eye or of vision disorders.Artificial Intelligence: Theory and development of COMPUTER SYSTEMS which perform tasks that normally require human intelligence. Such tasks may include speech recognition, LEARNING; VISUAL PERCEPTION; MATHEMATICAL COMPUTING; reasoning, PROBLEM SOLVING, DECISION-MAKING, and translation of language.Labor Onset: The beginning of true OBSTETRIC LABOR which is characterized by the cyclic uterine contractions of increasing frequency, duration, and strength causing CERVICAL DILATATION to begin (LABOR STAGE, FIRST ).Reference Values: The range or frequency distribution of a measurement in a population (of organisms, organs or things) that has not been selected for the presence of disease or abnormality.Liver Cirrhosis: Liver disease in which the normal microcirculation, the gross vascular anatomy, and the hepatic architecture have been variably destroyed and altered with fibrous septa surrounding regenerated or regenerating parenchymal nodules.Decision Support Techniques: Mathematical or statistical procedures used as aids in making a decision. They are frequently used in medical decision-making.Solitary Pulmonary Nodule: A single lung lesion that is characterized by a small round mass of tissue, usually less than 1 cm in diameter, and can be detected by chest radiography. A solitary pulmonary nodule can be associated with neoplasm, tuberculosis, cyst, or other anomalies in the lung, the CHEST WALL, or the PLEURA.Radiographic Image Interpretation, Computer-Assisted: Computer systems or networks designed to provide radiographic interpretive information.Immunoassay: A technique using antibodies for identifying or quantifying a substance. Usually the substance being studied serves as antigen both in antibody production and in measurement of antibody by the test substance.Cohort Studies: Studies in which subsets of a defined population are identified. These groups may or may not be exposed to factors hypothesized to influence the probability of the occurrence of a particular disease or other outcome. Cohorts are defined populations which, as a whole, are followed in an attempt to determine distinguishing subgroup characteristics.Cross-Sectional Studies: Studies in which the presence or absence of disease or other health-related variables are determined in each member of the study population or in a representative sample at one particular time. This contrasts with LONGITUDINAL STUDIES which are followed over a period of time.Image Enhancement: Improvement of the quality of a picture by various techniques, including computer processing, digital filtering, echocardiographic techniques, light and ultrastructural MICROSCOPY, fluorescence spectrometry and microscopy, scintigraphy, and in vitro image processing at the molecular level.Multivariate Analysis: A set of techniques used when variation in several variables has to be studied simultaneously. In statistics, multivariate analysis is interpreted as any analytic method that allows simultaneous study of two or more dependent variables.Treatment Outcome: Evaluation undertaken to assess the results or consequences of management and procedures used in combating disease in order to determine the efficacy, effectiveness, safety, and practicability of these interventions in individual cases or series.Enzyme-Linked Immunosorbent Assay: An immunoassay utilizing an antibody labeled with an enzyme marker such as horseradish peroxidase. While either the enzyme or the antibody is bound to an immunosorbent substrate, they both retain their biologic activity; the change in enzyme activity as a result of the enzyme-antibody-antigen reaction is proportional to the concentration of the antigen and can be measured spectrophotometrically or with the naked eye. Many variations of the method have been developed.Calibration: Determination, by measurement or comparison with a standard, of the correct value of each scale reading on a meter or other measuring instrument; or determination of the settings of a control device that correspond to particular values of voltage, current, frequency or other output.Optic Nerve Diseases: Conditions which produce injury or dysfunction of the second cranial or optic nerve, which is generally considered a component of the central nervous system. Damage to optic nerve fibers may occur at or near their origin in the retina, at the optic disk, or in the nerve, optic chiasm, optic tract, or lateral geniculate nuclei. Clinical manifestations may include decreased visual acuity and contrast sensitivity, impaired color vision, and an afferent pupillary defect.Tomography, X-Ray Computed: Tomography using x-ray transmission and a computer algorithm to reconstruct the image.Nephelometry and Turbidimetry: Chemical analysis based on the phenomenon whereby light, passing through a medium with dispersed particles of a different refractive index from that of the medium, is attenuated in intensity by scattering. In turbidimetry, the intensity of light transmitted through the medium, the unscattered light, is measured. In nephelometry, the intensity of the scattered light is measured, usually, but not necessarily, at right angles to the incident light beam.Reference Standards: A basis of value established for the measure of quantity, weight, extent or quality, e.g. weight standards, standard solutions, methods, techniques, and procedures used in diagnosis and therapy.Support Vector Machines: Learning algorithms which are a set of related supervised computer learning methods that analyze data and recognize patterns, and used for classification and regression analysis.Natriuretic Peptide, Brain: A PEPTIDE that is secreted by the BRAIN and the HEART ATRIA, stored mainly in cardiac ventricular MYOCARDIUM. It can cause NATRIURESIS; DIURESIS; VASODILATION; and inhibits secretion of RENIN and ALDOSTERONE. It improves heart function. It contains 32 AMINO ACIDS.Cervical Ripening: A change in the CERVIX UTERI with respect to its readiness to relax. The cervix normally becomes softer, more flexible, more distensible, and shorter in the final weeks of PREGNANCY. These cervical changes can also be chemically induced (LABOR, INDUCED).Probability: The study of chance processes or the relative frequency characterizing a chance process.Mass Screening: Organized periodic procedures performed on large groups of people for the purpose of detecting disease.Early Diagnosis: Methods to determine in patients the nature of a disease or disorder at its early stage of progression. Generally, early diagnosis improves PROGNOSIS and TREATMENT OUTCOME.