Loud Messengers — P Values and Effect Size

  • Lemuel A. Moyé


Part of the application process for medical school admissions includes an interview with several faculty at the institution. While visiting one medical school that was considering me as a candidate, I was interviewed by a basic scientist— a neurophysiologist. During our conversation, the topic eventually turned to research. The interviewer finally commented that he was lamenting over a failed manuscript submission. Indulging my request for additional information, he related that his manuscript had been rejected by a prestigious journal, apparently for lack of statistical significance. Since I had some exposure to p values, we discussed their meaning and nonmeaning, jointly groping toward some inner truth, and finally realized together that “statistical significance” does not go hand in hand with clinical significance. We together broke some of the bonds with which p values had tied us so tightly. The purpose of this chapter is to break some more.


High Blood Pressure Attributable Risk Primary Pulmonary Hypertension Expert Testimony Hazardous Drinking 
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© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2000

Authors and Affiliations

  • Lemuel A. Moyé
    • 1
  1. 1.School of Public HealthUniversity of TexasHoustonUSA

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