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Created: Aug 30, 2019
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Methadone Study
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Methadone is an addictive opiate medication that is prescribed by medical professionals. Methadone is typically used to treat individuals who suffer from addiction to opioid drugs such as heroin or prescription pain killers. Because this medication is so addictive it is imperative with any study participants are closely monitored. In this study, the dataset compares the average of the daily maximum pain intensity scores over 5 days on methadone and over another 5 days on placebo for a random sample of 11 patients.


There does not appear to be a bias in the way the research was conducting, however there are limited details when obtaining the data. When the analysis was conducted it was measured and collected using a Visual Analogue Scale. The participants selected a spoton a pain scale and the correlating number was recorded. The pain scale varied from 0-100, 100 represented the highest level of pain intensity. The pain level was done daily.


The results for this data display a p value of and from these results there is not enough evidence to conclude there is a difference between the two medians of treatment.  8 individuals are noted below and 3 are noted as above. The sample median is -6.4, and that means that the Methadone was more effective than the placebo. mean Reviewing the hypothesis test, and looking at the equation of Placebo minus Methadone, our results show that Methadone in fact reduced pain.

Result 1:

Paired T hypothesis test:

D = μ1 - μ2 : Mean of the difference between Methadone and Placebo
0 : μD = 0
A : μD ≠ 0
Hypothesis test results:



Std. Err.




Methadone - Placebo






Differences stored in column, Differences.


Result 2:

Hypothesis test results:
median : median of Variable
0 : median = 0
A : median < 0



n for test

Sample Median
















Overall there is not enough information in this case study to make clinical interpretations.   However, the p-value does show results or evidence of being able to reduce pain in the samples obtained. If the test was done over a longer period of time rather than just 5 days, I think we could have come to a better conclusion and clinical evidence regarding methadone use and reduction in pain. If the test was repeated a larger sample size and longer time period to collect and obtain data could have resulted in more clinically conclusive results.

Result 1: Paired T hypothesis test   [Info]

Paired T hypothesis test:

μD = μ1 - μ2 : Mean of the difference between Methadone and Placebo
H0 : μD = 0
HA : μD ≠ 0
Hypothesis test results:
DifferenceMeanStd. Err.DFT-StatP-value
Methadone - Placebo-5.34545451.710734210-3.12465520.0108
Differences stored in column, Differences.

Result 2: Sign Test   [Info]
Hypothesis test results:
median : median of Variable
H0 : median = 0
HA : median < 0
Variablenn for testSample MedianBelowEqualAboveP-value

HTML link:
<A href="">Methadone Study</A>

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By nku.dr.nolan
Aug 31, 2019

Hi Karly - so it looks like you've done this two different ways: T-test, and sign test. Only one of these can be the best choice (and as you can see they lead to different conclusions, so we better make that choice before we look at that part). The only choice here is the sign test. This is because while we are writing down numbers between 0 and 100, they are not interval-ratio measurements. Fact is if you give me this scale, I probably will respond 0, 25, 50, 75, or 100. Or if I'm in a random mood I might say 37. The point being that distance between numbers isn't all that meaningful.

For conclusions, clinically we got decreased pain for 8 of the 11 in the study. We can't say that's clinically relevant because it the statistical result is lacking evidence of a difference in median pain. But, certainly if we had been able to conclude a statistical decrease in pain, this could well be clinically relevant. We'd therefore want to call for a larger study that would help us to learn more precisely about anything that might be here.

Hope this helps!

There's also one other important mistake in your work - and that is focusing on numbers like -6.4. That's a sample statistic, and really isn't useful. Until we get to a p-value or CI, we don't have anything that allows us to generalize to the entire population.

By brian.hargis1337
Aug 30, 2019

It would be interesting to see the data sets compared to a set of data that represented a typical/standard pain reliever to be utilized as a control to determine if there was an effectiveness or clinical value to how impactful the methadone could be as a choice for implementing pain management for a client. Another takeaway I feel would help an analysis of the result would be to have a standard or norm established for an “average pain rating” using the scale at hand for the research, or to at the very least establish a baseline with the participants involved.

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