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Table 4 Efficacy and heterogeneity

From: Tumor necrosis factor alpha drugs in rheumatoid arthritis: systematic review and metaanalysis of efficacy and safety

Comparisons (Anti-TNFα vs. control)*** ACR response Anti-TNFα Events/Total Control Events/Total RR (CI 95%) NNT Q I2%
All doses of anti-TNFα drugs vs. control (4618 vs. 2261) ACR20 2709/4618 941/2261 1.8 (1.4–2.3) 6 (5–7) 157.7* 92
  ACR50 1879/4618 519/2261 2.5 (1.8–3.4) 6 (5–6) 109.8* 89
  ACR70 1106/4618   2.8 (1.9–4.1) 8 (7–9) 52.4* 77
Recommended doses of anti-TNFα drugs vs. control (2874 vs. 2260) ACR20 1808/2874 949/2261 1.8 (1.4–2.3) 5 (5–6) 149.5* 92
  ACR50 1247/2874 519/2261 2.4 (1.7–3.4) 5 (5–6) 102.9* 88
  ACR70 733/2874 270/2261 2.7 (1.8–4.1) 7 (7–9) 49.2* 76
High-doses of anti-TNFα drugs vs. control (1169 vs. 921) ACR20 697/1169 293/921 2.5 (1.5–4.2) 4 (4–5) 57.2* 93
  ACR50 469/1169 149/921 3.4 (2.0–5.8) 5 (4–5) 30.5* 87
  ACR70 295/1169 85/921 3.9 (2.0–7.6) 7 (6–8) 16.6* 76
Low-doses of anti-TNFα drugs vs. control (251 vs. 252) ACR20 108/251 39/252 2.9 (1.7–5.1) 4 (3–6) 4.9 59
  ACR50 60/251 18/252 3.2 (2.0–5.3) 6 (5–10) 1.5 0
  ACR70 23/251 6/252 3.5 (1.4–8.6) 15 (10–38) 1.2 0
Anti-TNFα drugs vs. control in patients with No insufficient response to MTX (1964 vs. 1010) ACR20 1346/1964 641/1010 1.1 (0.9–1.3) NS 2.4 9
  ACR50 1013/1964 408/1010 1.3 (1.1–1.5) 9 (7–13) 8.8 55
  ACR70 669/1964 227/1010 1.5 (1.3–1.7) 12 (9–19) 7.0 43
Anti-TNFα drugs vs. control in patients with insufficient response to MTX (2654 vs. 1251) ACR20 1427/2654 308/1251 2.3 (2.0–2.7) 4 (3–5) 28.2* 75
  ACR50 866/2654 113/1251 3.6 (2.9–4.4) 5 (4–5) 7.2 3
  ACR70 437/2654 43/1251 4.4 (3.2–6.0) 7 (6–8) 4.2 0
Anti-TNFα drugs at recommended doses plus MTX vs. MTX alone in patients with insufficient response to MTX (779 vs. 743) ACR20 444/779 167/743 2.6 (2.1–3.3) 3 (3–4) 4.3 7
  ACR50 274/779 65/743 4.1 (2.6–6.6) 4 (4–5) 4.6 13
  ACR70 132/779 30/743 4.1 (2.4–7.1) 8 (7–11) 2.5 0
Anti-TNFα drugs versus placebo at recommended doses (191 vs. 190) ACR20 98/191 30/190 3.4 (1.6–7.3) 3 (3–4) 3.8* 74
  ACR50 56/191 13/190 4.4 (1.5–12.5) 5 (4–7) 2.9 66
  ACR70 25/191 3/190 8.1 (2.5–26.4) 9 (7–16) 0.1 0
Anti-TNFα drugs at recommended doses plus MTX versus MTX alone in patients with no previous resistance to MTX (882 vs. 793) ACR20 631/882 500/793 1.2 (1.1–1.2) 10 (7–16) 0.4 0
  ACR50 504/882 315/793 1.6 (1.4–1.7) 6 (5–8) 1.1 0
  ACR70 352/882 180/793 1.8 (1.5–2.1) 6 (5–8) 3.9 23
Anti-TNFα drugs versus MTX at recommended doses (704 vs. 702) ACR20 466/704 474/702 1.0 (0.9–1.1) NS 6.9* 71
  ACR50 320/704 309/702 1.0 (0.9–1.2) NS 3.6 45
  ACR70 177/704 162/702 1.1 (0.9–1.3) NS 2.2 11
  1. RR (95%CI): relative risk (95% confidence limits)
  2. NNT: number of patients needed to be treated
  3. Q: Cochrane's Q
  4. I2: percentage of variability in study results attributable to between-study differences
  5. * statistical heterogeneity
  6. NS: non-significant results
  7. *** number of patients being treated with anti-TNFα versus number of patients in the control groups