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Monograph: Normative Data in Electrodiagnostic Medicine
This article reviews, without mathematics, the important principles governing the acquisition and use of normative data in electrodiagnostic medicine. Common flaws in neurophysiological normative data include vague clinical criteria for establishing freedom from disease, samples that are too small and inadequately stratified, and application of Gaussian statistics to non-Gaussian variables. Other problematic issues concern the trade-off between permissible false-positivity and false-negativity in defining the limits of nor-mative from sample data, test–retest variability, and the use of multiple independent test measurements in each electrodiagnostic examination. The following standards for normative data are proposed: (1) standardized objective determination of freedom from disease; (2) appropriately large sample of normal subjects; (3) proportional statification of normal subjects for known relevant variables; (4) test of Gaussian fit for application of Gaussian statistics; and (5) data presentation by percentiles when Gaussian fit is in doubt. Many existing normative studies in clinical neurophysiology do not meet these standards. High-quality normative data, readily acces-sible, is essential for the accurate electrodiagnosis of neuromuscular dis-eases. © 1997 American Association of Electrodiagnostic Medicine. Published by John Wiley & Sons, Inc.

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All conflicts of interest have been resolved according to ACCME standards. All authors/planners of this activity had nothing to disclose. 

The AANEM designates this enduring material for a maximum of 2.0 AMA PRA Category 1 Credits TM. Physicians should claim only the credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity. Credit expires 3/1/2025.
Drs. Les Dorfman and Lawrence R. Robinson,
Availability: On-Demand
Expires on 03/01/2025
Cost: Member: $0.00
Non-Member: $15.00
Credit Offered:
2 CME Credits
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