[R-meta] Fail-and-safe number calculation in the meta package

Guido Schwarzer sc at imbi.uni-freiburg.de
Wed Feb 28 11:11:11 CET 2018

Dear Kyungnam,

I just recovered from a flu, therefore, my delayed reply.

The fail-safe-N method is not implemented in R package *meta* as this is 
not a sensible method to assess bias in meta-analysis (see, for example, 
Becker 2005, Carson et al. 1990, Ferguson & Heene 2012, Cochrane 
Handbook, section

However, it should be rather easy to use the output from *meta* to use 
fsn() from the *metafor* package. Here is a corresponding toy example:

m1 <- metagen(1:5, rep(2, 5))
metafor::fsn(m1$TE, m1$seTE^2)
metafor::fsn(TE, seTE^2, data = m1)
metafor::fsn(TE, seTE^2, data = m1, type = "Orwin")

Best wishes,


Becker, B.J. 2005, Failsafe N or File-Drawer Number, in HR Rothstein, AJ 
Sutton & M Borenstein (eds), Publication bias in meta analysis: 
prevention, assessment and adjustments, Wiley, Chichester.

Carson, K.P., Schriesheim, C.A. & Kinicki, A.J., 1990, The Usefulness of 
the "Fail-Safe" Statistic in Meta-Analysis, Educational and 
Psychological Measurement Educational and Psychological Measurement, 
50(2), 233-43.

Ferguson, C.J. & Heene, M., 2012, A Vast Graveyard of Undead Theories: 
Publication Bias and Psychological Science's Aversion to the Null, 
Perspectives on psychological science : a journal of the Association for 
Psychological Science, 7(6), 555-61.

Dr. Guido Schwarzer
Institute of Medical Biometry and Statistics,
Faculty of Medicine and Medical Center - University of Freiburg

Postal address: Stefan-Meier-Str. 26, D-79104 Freiburg

Phone: +49/761/203-6668
Mail: sc at imbi.uni-freiburg.de
Homepage: http://www.imbi.uni-freiburg.de

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