The cohort is the basis of all epidemiologic study designs as it is the closest way to study the natural progression of people's life course over which the temporal relationship between exposures and outcomes can be assessed. Although a cohort is defined as a specified group of people followed over a certain period of time, cohort studies are often used to compare the occurrence of health outcomes between groups of people with and without certain exposures or between groups with different levels of exposure. In this chapter, cohort design, analysis, and interpretation are described and summarized using a 10-point checklist of important issues to consider when reading a cohort study. This includes the potential impacts of selection bias, ascertainment bias, follow-up bias and the need to consider confounding and chance. Good understanding of cohort design provides the foundation for appraising all study designs in particular experimental trials.
Tata, L. J. (2014). How to read a cohort study. In N. J. Talley, G. Richard Locke III, P. Moayyedi, J. West, & Y. A. Saito (Eds.), GI Epidemiology: Diseases and Clinical Methodology. (Second). https://doi.org/10.1002/9781118727072.ch2