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Vol. 16 - Num. 63

Critical appraisal in small doses

Odds ratio can be misleading

Manuel Molina Ariasa

aServicio de Gastroenterología Pediátrica. Hospital Universitario La Paz. Madrid. España.

Correspondence: M Molina. E-mail:

Reference of this article: Molina Arias M. Odds ratio can be misleading. Rev Pediatr Aten Primaria. 2014;16:275-9.

Published in Internet: 30-09-2014


The way how we present the results of scientific studies can help to magnify or reduce the impact of the results. Thus, the differences in the use of relative risk and odds ratio and their behavior in relation to the prevalence of the studied effect are discussed. When the prevalence of the effect is high, the odds ratio tends to magnify the strength of the association, so that in these cases it is preferable to obtain the relative risk, whenever possible, as it will provide a more accurate measure of association.


Odds ratio Risk ratio



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