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Validity

 

This term is a difficult concept in clinical trials, bute refers to a trial being able to measure what it sets out to measure. A trial that set out to measure the analgesic effect of a procedure might be in trouble if patients had no pain. Or in a condition where treatment is life-long, evaluating an intervention for 10 minutes might be seen as silly. Looking at validity is not always easy, but a good worked example is that on acupuncture and stroke.

A downloadable essay including validity scoring is available .

In diagnostic tests validity is the extent to which a test measures what it was intended to measure. High reliability is necessary but does not guarantee high validity.