Weighted estimating equations for longitudinal studies with death and non-monotone missing time-dependent covariates and outcomes



We propose a marginal modeling approach to estimate the association between a time-dependent covariate and an outcome in longitudinal studies where some study participants die during follow-up and both variables have non-monotone response patterns. The proposed method is an extension of weighted estimating equations that allows the outcome and covariate to have different missing-data patterns. We present methods for both random and non-random missing-data mechanisms. A study of functional recovery in a cohort of elderly female hip-fracture patients motivates the approach. Copyright © 2007 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.