National Archive of Computerized Data on Aging

Analyze & Subset--Study No. 25501

Title: National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES), 1999-2000

Online Analysis Using SDA

The online analysis system allows you to run both simple and complex analyses, recode and compute new variables, and subset variables or cases for downloading. The software powering the system, named Survey Documentation and Analysis (SDA), was developed by the Computer-assisted Survey Methods Program (CSM) at the University of California, Berkeley.

Click on the link(s) below to begin using SDA.

Weight

Please note that weights may affect analysis results.

Most data analyses require either the interviewed sample weight (variable name: WTINT2YR) or examined sample weight (variable name: WTMEC2YR). Use of the correct sample weight for NHANES analyses is extremely important. A good rule of thumb is to use "the least common denominator" approach. With this approach, the analyst checks the variables of interest. The variable that was collected on the smallest number of persons is the least common denominator, and the sample weight that applies to that variable is the appropriate one to use for that particular analysis.

NCHS June 2004 Version--NHANES Analytic Guidelines

Beginning in 1999, the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) became a continuous, annual survey rather than the periodic survey that it had been in the past. For a variety of reasons, including disclosure and reliability issues, the survey data are released on public use data files every two years. Thus, the data release cycle for the ongoing (and continuous) NHANES is described as NHANES 1999-2000, NHANES 2001-2002, NHANES 2003-2004, etc. In addition to the analysis of data from any two-year cycle, it is possible to combine two or more "cycles" (e.g., 1999-2000 and 2001-2002) to create NHANES 1999-2002, thus increasing sample size and analytic options. In order to produce estimates with greater statistical reliability, combining two or more two-year cycles of the continuous NHANES is encouraged and strongly recommended. To facilitate analysis of these first two cycles of the continuous NHANES, the appropriate four-year sample weights have been calculated and added to the demographic data files for both 1999-2000 and 2001-2002. Thus, users of the earlier release of the NHANES 1999-2000 demographic file must use the updated demographic file to appropriately analyze the combined four-year data. These four-year sample weights have the same variable name in each two-year demographic file. For example, for the sample persons for whom there are MEC data items, the variable name for the four year weight is WTMEC4YR. The procedure for variance estimation (sampling errors) has been changed for NHANES 1999-2000 to one that protects confidentiality and allows the use of "PSUs" and is the recommended approach for analysis on the ongoing and continuous NHANES. This method creates Masked Variance Units (MVUs) which can be used as if they were Pseudo PSUs to estimate sampling errors (similar to past NHANES). The Pseudo-PSUs on the data file are not the "true" design PSUs. They are a collection of secondary sampling units aggregated into groups called Masked Variance Units (MVUs) for the purpose of variance estimation. They produce variance estimates that closely approximate the variances that would have been estimated using the "true" design variance estimates. These MVUs have been created for both NHANES 1999-2000 and NHANES 2001-2002 and added to the demographic data files for both two-year periods. They can also be used for the combined four-year dataset. The stratum variable is SDMVSTRA and the PSU variable is SDMVPSU. Software such as SUDAAN, STATA, and SAS can be used to estimate sampling errors by the Taylor series (linearization) method. Typically, the dataset should first be sorted by SDMVSTRA and SDMVPSU. There are no replicate weights provided for NHANES 2001-2002. Replication techniques can still be used to estimate sampling errors if the software, such as WESVAR, computes its own set of replicate weights based on the nested PSU within stratum design. Some data components of NHANES are only available for 1999-2000 or 2001-2002. For these components, the two-year sample weights and the two-year MVUs can be used for analysis. For 2001-2002, the two-year weights and MVUs are provided on the demographic data file. For 1999-2000, the previously released demographic file has been updated to add the MVUs and four-year sample weights. At this time, the preferred approach for calculating sampling errors is to use the MVUs and to ignore the JK-1 technique utilized as an interim approach with the release of the NHANES 1999-2000 data. On occasion, there may be a particular issue that requires comparison of results from NHANES 1999-2000 with NHANES 2001-2002. For summary statistics such as means and proportions, the appropriate two-year sample weights and MVUs can be used for reasonably valid inferences (although caution should be used when producing estimates for any detailed population subgroup). Calculation of totals (e.g., estimates of the number of persons with a particular characteristic such as BMI greater than 30 or with impaired glucose tolerance) is not appropriate for NHANES 1999-2000 unless the numbers are ratio-adjusted to population counts based on year 2000 Census figures. This is not an issue for NHANES 2001-2002 which was linked to the 2000 Census counts. Users are encouraged to check the NHANES Web site on a regular basis to be aware of the latest version of these NHANES analytic guidelines.

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