# Statistical power

The ability of a study to demonstrate an association or causal relationship between two variables, given that an association exists. For example, 80% power in a clinical trial means that the study has a 80% chance of ending up with a p value of less than 5% in a statistical test (i.e. a statistically significant treatment effect) if there really was an important difference (e.g. 10% versus 5% mortality) between treatments. If the statistical power of a study IS low, the study results will be questionable (the study might have been too small to detect any differences). By convention, 80% is an acceptable level of power. See also p value.