Falsificationism and clinical trials

S. J. Senn*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

48 Citations (Scopus)


The relevance of the philosophy of Sir Karl Popper to the planning, conduct and analysis of clinical trials is examined. It is shown that blinding and randomization can only be regarded as valuable for the purpose of refuting universal hypotheses. The purpose of inclusion criteria is also examined. It is concluded that a misplaced belief in induction is responsible for many false notions regarding clinical trials.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1679-1692
Number of pages14
JournalStatistics in Medicine
Issue number11
Publication statusPublished - Nov 1991
Externally publishedYes


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