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Professor M Underwood, University of Warwick, Coventry, UK; M.Underwood@warwick.ac.uk
For older patients with chronic knee pain, should general practitioners advise use of topical or oral non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs)?
randomised controlled trial (Topical or Oral Ibuprofen [TOIB]).
blinded (data collectors).
26 general practices in the UK.
282 patients ⩾50 years of age (mean age 63 y, 54% women) with knee pain (97% with osteoarthritis). Exclusion criteria included history of, or awaiting, knee replacement, and recent knee injury.
the patient’s general practitioner recommended preferential use of topical ibuprofen (n = 138) or oral ibuprofen (n = 144).
Western Ontario and McMaster Universities Osteoarthritis Index (WOMAC) score, adverse effects, and cost-effectiveness. The study had >80% power to show equivalence in WOMAC scores to within 10 mm (α = 0.05).
88% (intention-to-treat …
Source of funding: Health Technology Assessment Programme; Goldshield Pharmaceuticals supplied starter packs of topical ibuprofen.