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Table 3 Comparative efficacy of buprenorphine

From: A meta-analysis of efficacy and tolerability of buprenorphine for the relief of cancer pain

Description Number of studies (study included) Participants RR (95% CI) Remark
With outcomes/total (buprenorphine group) With outcomes/total (comparator)
TD route      
Global impression of change 2 (Poulain et al. 2008; Pace et al. 2007) 96/120 72/121 1.35 (1.14-2.59); I2:42% NNT: 4.9 (3.1-10.9)
Responders 35.5 μg/h 2 (Bohme and Likar 2003; Sittl et al. 2003) 27/76 17/75 1.58 (0.94-2.66); I2:39%  
Responders 52.5 μg/h 2 (Bohme and Likar 2003; Sittl et al. 2003) 37/75 17/75 1.83 (1.12-2.99); I2: 64% NNT: 5.3 (3.06-24.09)
Responders 70 μg/h 2 (Bohme and Likar 2003; Sittl et al. 2003) 34/87 17/75 1.87 (1.17-3); I2: 0% NNT: 5.03 (2.98-18.6)
Rescue SL buprenorphine 2 (Sorge and Sittl 2004: Sittl et al. 2003) 79/247 23/84 1.25 (0.71-2.18); I2: 40%  
Requirement of prophylactic antiemetics 2 (Sorge and Sittl 2004: Sittl et al. 2003) 24/129 53/110 0.63 (0.43-0.9); I2: 4% NNT: 3.8 (2.4-8.4)
Requirement of laxatives 2 (Sorge and Sittl 2004: Wirz et al. 2009) 45/151 70/160 1.03 (0.8-1.32); I2: 69%  
Nausea 2 (Pace et al. 2007; Wirz et al. 2009) 11/87 28/84 0.38 (0.2-0.71); I2: 0% NNT: 9.3 (5.6-28.5)
Constipation 2 (Aurilio et al. 2009; Wirz et al. 2009) 32/77 33/71 0.89 (0.55-1.17); I2: 0% TD fentanyl
Constipation 2 (Pace et al. 2007; Wirz et al. 2009) 30/87 36/84 0.89 (0.55-1.17); I2: 81% Morphine
CNS- related AEs 2 ((Pace et al. 2007; Sittl et al. 2003) 12/116 9/73 0.74 (0.33-1.66); I2: 0%  
Skin related AEs 2 (Sorge and Sittl 2004: Sittl et al. 2003) 38/209 9/85 1.42 (0.73-2.76); I2: 16%  
SAEs Deaths 2 (Bohme and Likar 2003; Sittl et al. 2003) 3/155 1/75 1.48 (0.23-9.66); I2: 0%  
IM route      
Any pain improvement (with 0.3 mg dose) 2 (Dini et al. 1986; Taguchi 1982) 22/42 6/34 3.03 (1.4-6.54); I2: 0%  
Any pain improvement (with 0.2 mg dose) 2 (Dini et al. 1986; Taguchi 1982) 23/35 6/34 3.7 (1.72-7.93); I2: 0%  
  1. AE’s: adverse events, SAE’s: Serious adverse events; CNS: central nervous system; IM : intramuscular injection; NNT: number-needed-to treat; RR: relative risk; SL: sublingual administration; TD: transdermal administration.