Multicategory individualized treatment regime using outcome weighted learning

Early View

Abstract Individualized treatment regimes (ITRs) aim to recommend treatments based on patient‐specific characteristics in order to maximize the expected clinical outcome. Outcome weighted learning approaches have been proposed for this optimization problem with primary focus on the binary treatment case. Many require assumptions of the outcome value or the randomization mechanism. In this paper, we propose a general framework for multicategory ITRs using generic surrogate risk. The proposed method accommodates the situations when the outcome takes negative value and/or when the propensity score is unknown. Theoretical results about Fisher consistency, excess risk, and risk consistency are established. In practice, we recommend using differentiable convex loss for computational optimization. We demonstrate the superiority of the proposed method under multinomial deviance risk to some existing methods by simulation and application on data from a clinical trial.

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