Table 1.

Overall proportion of patients with a clinically meaningful response to treatment

INTERVENTION TYPEGRADE CERTAINTY OF EVIDENCENO. OF RCTsINTERVENTION EVENT RATE, % (n/N)CONTROL EVENT RATE, % (n/N)OUTCOME MEASURED TIME FRAMERISK RATIO (95% CI)NUMBER NEEDED TO TREATP VALUE
AcupunctureVery low322 (27/121)13 (16/126)8 to 10 wk1.81 (0.55 to 5.98)NSSNA
Anticonvulsant medications*Moderate4046 (2698/5837)30 (1120/3738)2 to 16 wk1.54 (1.45 to 1.63)7NA
    • Gabapentin1043 (678/1578)25 (246/974)2 to 16 wk1.60 (1.42 to 1.81)6.17
    • Pregabalin2748 (1747/3650)31 (758/2419)5 to 15 wk1.56 (1.45 to 1.67)7.17
    • Oxcarbazepine343 (170/395)33 (79/236)16 wk1.22 (0.98 to 1.52)NSS.17
    • Topiramate148 (103/214)34 (37/109)12 wk1.42 (1.05 to 1.91)8.17
OpioidsLow649 (289/593)36 (198/556)5 to 12 wk1.37 (1.19 to 1.57)8NA
Rubefacients*Low1049 (635/1303)34 (350/1041)6 to 52 wk1.40 (1.26 to 1.55)7NA
    • Frequent application creams or low-dose patches537 (106/285)25 (62/249)6 to 8 wk1.56 (1.20 to 2.03)9.35
    • Less frequent application (high-potency patches)552 (529/1018)36 (288/792)12 to 52 wk1.36 (1.22 to 1.52)7.35
SNRIs*Moderate857 (995/1759)41 (405/987)6 to 13 wk1.45 (1.33 to 1.59)7NA
    • Duloxetine659 (759/1279)42 (344/817)12 to 13 wk1.48 (1.34 to 1.62)6.48
    • Venlafaxine or desvenlafaxine249 (236/480)36 (61/170)6 to 12 wk1.35 (1.08 to 1.69)8.48
TCAsVery low278 (66/85)26 (22/85)6 to 8 wk3.00 (2.05 to 4.38), fixed-effects model2NA
2.35 (0.79 to 6.95), random-effects modelNSS
  • GRADE—Grading of Recommendations Assessment, Development and Evaluation; NA—not applicable; NSS—not statistically significant; RCT—randomized controlled trial; SNRI—serotonin-norepinephrine reuptake inhibitor; TCA—tricyclic antidepressant.

  • * For rubefacients, SNRIs, and anticonvulsant medications, no statistically significant difference was found between individual drug types.