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A Potential Causal Association Mining Algorithm for Screening Adverse Drug Reactions in Postmarketing Surveillance

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7 Author(s)
Yanqing Ji ; Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, Gonzaga University, Spokane, USA ; Hao Ying ; Peter Dews ; Ayman Mansour
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Early detection of unknown adverse drug reactions (ADRs) in postmarketing surveillance saves lives and prevents harmful consequences. We propose a novel data mining approach to signaling potential ADRs from electronic health databases. More specifically, we introduce potential causal association rules (PCARs) to represent the potential causal relationship between a drug and ICD-9 (CDC. (2010). International Classification of Diseases, Ninth Revision (ICD-9). [Online]. Available: coded signs or symptoms representing potential ADRs. Due to the infrequent nature of ADRs, the existing frequency-based data mining methods cannot effectively discover PCARs. We introduce a new interestingness measure, potential causal leverage, to quantify the degree of association of a PCAR. This measure is based on the computational, experience-based fuzzy recognition-primed decision (RPD) model that we developed previously (Y. Ji, R. M. Massanari, J. Ager, J. Yen, R. E. Miller, and H. Ying, “A fuzzy logic-based computational recognition-primed decision model,” Inf. Sci., vol. 177, pp. 4338-4353, 2007) on the basis of the well-known, psychology-originated qualitative RPD model (G. A. Klein, “A recognition-primed decision making model of rapid decision making,” in Decision Making in Action: Models and Methods, 1993, pp. 138-147). The potential causal leverage assesses the strength of the association of a drug-symptom pair given a collection of patient cases. To test our data mining approach, we retrieved electronic medical data for 16 206 patients treated by one or more than eight drugs of our interest at the Veterans Affairs Medical Center in Detroit between 2007 and 2009. We selected enalapril as the target drug for this ADR signal generation study. We used our algorithm to preliminarily evaluate the associations between enalapril and all the ICD-9 codes associated with it. The experimental results indicate that our - pproach has a potential to better signal potential ADRs than risk ratio and leverage, two traditional frequency-based measures. Among the top 50 signal pairs (i.e., enalapril versus symptoms) ranked by the potential causal-leverage measure, the physicians on the project determined that eight of them probably represent true causal associations.

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IEEE Transactions on Information Technology in Biomedicine  (Volume:15 ,  Issue: 3 )