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Evid Based Nurs 2:81 doi:10.1136/ebn.2.3.81
  • Treatment

Review: minor analgesics are effective for primary dysmenorrhoea

Various analgesics v placebo for dysmenorrhoea*

Weighted event rates
Analgesic (number of trials) Analgesic Placebo RBI (95% CI) NNT (95% CI)
Outcome: pain relief
Naproxen (13) 59% 17% 217% (172 to 265) 3 (2 to 4)
Ibuprofen (9) 70% 31% 141% (58 to 268) 3 (2 to 4)
Mefenamic acid (3) 64% 31% 103% (65 to 148) 3 (2 to 5)
Aspirin (5) 29% 18% 60% (12 to 129) 10 (6 to 50)
Weighted event rates
Analgesic (number of trials) Analgesic Placebo RRR (95% CI) NNT (95% CI)
Outcome: use of rescue analgesics
Naproxen (10) 18% 51% 62% (56 to 68) 4 (3 to 5)
Ibuprofen (2) 13% 57% 77% (59 to 87) 3 (2 to 4)
Aspirin (3) 39% 70% 21% (−8 to 42) Not significant
Weighted event rates
Analgesic (number of trials) Analgesic Placebo RRR (95% CI) NNT (95% CI)
* Abbreviations defined in glossary. Data provided by author.
Outcome: restrictions in daily life
Naproxen (7) 60% 86% 29% (15 to 40) 5 (3 to 8)
Ibuprofen (3) 12% 55% 74% (58 to 84) 3 (2 to 5)
Aspirin (3) 50% 62% 18% (−4 to 36) Not significant

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