eISSN: 1896-9151
ISSN: 1734-1922
Archives of Medical Science
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1/2019
vol. 15
 
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abstract:
Systematic review/Meta-analysis

Efficacy and safety of various anti-rheumatic treatments for patients with rheumatoid arthritis: a network meta-analysis

Kexun Ma, Ling Li, Chunhui Liu, Lingling Zhou, Xueping Zhou

Arch Med Sci 2019; 15, 1: 33–54
Online publish date: 2018/12/30
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Introduction
Biologics and traditional disease-modifying anti-rheumatic drugs (DMARDs) are generally used in treating patients with rheumatoid arthritis (RA). Previous studies have presented abundant data and information about the efficacy of such treatments, but the results were incomplete and inconclusive. This network meta-analysis was conducted to compare and assess the efficacy and safety of 15 therapies employing biologics and DMARDs for RA patients.

Material and methods
Six outcomes (American College of Rheumatology 20% response rate (ACR20), ACR50, ACR70, remission, adverse events (AEs) and serious adverse events (SAEs)) were used to evaluate the efficacy and safety of different treatments. The node-splitting method was used to assess the inconsistency, and the rank probabilities of the therapies were estimated by surface under the cumulative ranking curve. Besides, Jadad scale was used to evaluate the methodological quality of eligible studies.

Results
A total of 67 randomized controlled trials with 20,898 patients met the inclusion criteria. Most of the therapies presented better performance than conventional DMARDs (cDMARDs) and placebo in ACR20, ACR50 and ACR70. Conversely, the safety of cDMARDs and placebo seemed to be superior in AEs and SAEs. Also, tocilizumab (TCZ) and TCZ + methotrexate (MTX) showed better remission in pain compared to other treatments. Overall, certolizumab pegol (CZP) + MTX and TCZ + MTX had higher probability than the other treatments in efficacy outcomes.

Conclusions
We recommend CZP + MTX as the optimal drug therapy because it has the highest ranking in efficacy outcomes and relatively low risk of adverse events. TCZ + MTX is recommended as an alternative. Abatacept (ABT) and cDMARDs are not recommended due to their low efficacy.

keywords:

rheumatoid arthritis, biologics, disease-modifying anti-rheumatic drugs, network meta-analysis

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