In this paper, we apply flexible Bayesian survival analysis methods to investigate the risk of lymphoma associated with kidney transplantation among patients with end-stage renal disease. Of key interest is the potentially time-varying effect of a time-dependent exposure: transplant status. Bayesian modeling of the baseline hazard and the effect of transplant requires consideration of 2 timescales: time since study start and time since transplantation, respectively. Previous related work has not dealt with the separation of multiple timescales. Using a hierarchical model for the hazard function, both timescales are incorporated via conditionally independent stochastic processes; smoothing of each process is specified via intrinsic conditional Gaussian autoregressions. Features of the corresponding posterior distribution are evaluated from draws obtained via a Metropolis-Hastings-Green algorithm.
- Bayesian survival analysis
- Conditional autoregression
- Nonproportional hazards
- Reversible jump Markov chain Monte Carlo