The assessment of quality in medical diagnostic tests: a comparison of ROC/Youden and Taguchi methods

Tolga Taner (Research Student, Bogoaziçi University, Institute of Biomedical Engineering, Istanbul, Turkey)
Jiju Antony (Senior Teaching Fellow, Warwick University, International Manufacturing Centre, Coventry, UK)

International Journal of Health Care Quality Assurance

ISSN: 0952-6862

Publication date: 1 December 2000


Diagnostic tests are widely used in many areas of modern technological society, but they are of particular importance in medicine, where early and accurate diagnosis can decrease morbidity and mortality rates of disease. How the quality of diagnostic information and decisions should be measured in a meaningful way has become increasingly important in recent years as an abundance of new diagnostic tests have been introduced. A number of seemingly independent indices are studied for evaluating diagnostic performance such as the receiver operating characteristic curves and signal‐to‐noise ratios. Designing robustness into diagnostic tests can only be achieved by minimizing the variation in the total number of false diagnosis. This article has undertaken a comparison of signal‐to‐noise ratios developed by Taguchi in quality engineering and system performance in manufacturing industry. A hybrid is also computed and its relevance to physicians as an efficient assessment method is proposed and strongly encouraged.



Taner, T. and Antony, J. (2000), "The assessment of quality in medical diagnostic tests: a comparison of ROC/Youden and Taguchi methods", International Journal of Health Care Quality Assurance, Vol. 13 No. 7, pp. 300-307.

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Copyright © 2000, MCB UP Limited

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