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The LIFETEST Procedure

BY Statement
BY variables ;

You can specify a BY statement with PROC LIFETEST to obtain separate analyses on observations in groups defined by the BY variables.

The BY statement is more efficient than the STRATA statement for defining strata in large data sets. However, if you use the BY statement to define strata, PROC LIFETEST does not pool over strata for testing the association of survival time with covariates, nor does it test for homogeneity across the BY groups.

Interval size is computed separately for each BY group. When intervals are determined by default, they can be different for each BY group. To make intervals the same for each BY group, use the INTERVALS= option in the PROC LIFETEST statement.

When a BY statement appears, the procedure expects the input data set to be sorted in order of the BY variables. If your input data set is not sorted in ascending order, use one of the following alternatives:

  • Sort the data by using the SORT procedure with a similar BY statement.

  • Specify the BY statement option NOTSORTED or DESCENDING in the BY statement for the LIFETEST procedure. The NOTSORTED option does not mean that the data are unsorted but rather that the data are arranged in groups (according to values of the BY variables) and that these groups are not necessarily in alphabetical or increasing numeric order.

  • Create an index on the BY variables by using the DATASETS procedure.

For more information about the BY statement, see SAS Language Reference: Concepts. For more information about the DATASETS procedure, see the Base SAS Procedures Guide.

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