This paper considers statistical models in which two different types of events, such as the diagnosis of a disease and the remission of the disease, occur alternately over time and are observed subject to right censoring. We propose nonparametric estimators for the joint distribution of bivariate recurrence times and the marginal distribution of the first recurrence time. In general, the marginal distribution of the second recurrence time cannot be estimated due to an identifiability problem, but a conditional distribution of the second recurrence time can be estimated non-parametrically. In literature, statistical methods have been developed to estimate the joint distribution of bivariate recurrence times based on data of the first pair of censored bivariate recurrence times. These methods are efficient in the current model because recurrence times of higher orders are not used. Asymptotic properties of the estimators are established. Numerical studies demonstrate the estimator performs well with practical sample sizes. We apply the proposed method to a Denmark psychiatric case register data set for illustration of the methods and theory.
Statistical Methodology | Statistical Models | Statistical Theory | Survival Analysis
Huang, Chiung-Yu and Wang, Mei-Cheng, "Nonparametric Estimation of the Bivariate Recurrence Time Distribution" (October 2003). Johns Hopkins University, Dept. of Biostatistics Working Papers. Working Paper 26.