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Diabetes Care. 1995 Feb;18(2):245-50.

The use of areas under curves in diabetes research.

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  • 1Obesity Research Center, St. Luke's/Roosevelt Hospital, Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons, New York, New York 10025, USA.


Recently, several articles appearing in the diabetes literature have suggested that many investigators are unclear about a number of issues involving the use of areas under the curve (AUCs). This prompted us to reconsider issues in the calculation, use, meaning, and presentation of AUCs. We discuss five issues: 1) What is a curve and an area? 2) How should one graphically present a group's curve? 3) How should one calculate AUCs? 4) Should one subtract baseline values from outcome values before calculating AUCs? And 5) are AUCs the best way to combine multiple readings into a single index?

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