Statistics in medicine vol:18 issue:7 pages:835-54
The Jimma Infant Survival Differential Longitudinal Study is an Ethiopian study, set up to establish risk factors affecting infant survival and to investigate socio-economic, maternal and infant-rearing factors that contribute most to the child's early survival. Here, a subgroup of about 1500 children born in Jimma town is examined for their first year's weight gain. Of special interest is the impact of certain cultural practices like uvulectomy, milk teeth extraction and butter swallowing, on child's weight gain; these have never been thoroughly investigated in any study. In this context, the linear mixed model (Laird and Ware) is employed. The purpose of this paper is to illustrate the practical issues when constructing the longitudinal model. Recently developed diagnostics will be used herefor. Finally, special attention will be paid to the two-stage interpretation of the linear mixed model.