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st: advance a -foreach- loop?

From   Jeph Herrin <>
Subject   st: advance a -foreach- loop?
Date   Tue, 13 May 2008 15:45:46 -0400

I have hundreds of variables that I need to loop through
and process. Some of them are grouped together because they
represent different options that are not mutually exclusive;
for example, "Insurance type: check all that apply:" has
results stored in:


I have a datum -type- associated with each that tells me it is part of a
"multiselect" (sic) question, so when I loop through all my variables:

  foreach V of varlist `biglist' {
	if `type'=="M" {
		<do stuff>

The ... handles every other types of variable. However, when I
<do stuff> I'd like to handle all the variables in that particular
group, eg, payor_1-payor_6. I can do this, but then I need to advance
the -foreach- to the variable *after* payor_6.

One thought I had was to reference the variables by their number, which
is available via -describe, number- (I'd have to -keep `biglist'- first)
but I'm not sure how to refer to a variable by its number, and can't
find any info on how to do so.

Does anyone see how to make this idea - or any other- work so I can skip
ahead in a -foreach- loop?


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