Study designs of evaluations included in the review
Only randomised controlled trials (RCTs) were included.
Specific interventions included in the review
Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs):arthrotec; aspirin; benoxaprofen; diclofenac; diflunisal; etodolac; fenbufen; flurbiprofen; ibuprofen; indomethacin; isoxicam; ketoprofen; naproxen; niflumic acid; nimesulide; osmosin; piroxicam; proquazone; sulindac; tenoxicam; tiaprofenic acid; tolmetin; zomepirac.
Analgesics: acetaminophen; glafenine; tilidine-naloxone; paracetamol; pentazocine.
Intra-articular steroids: betamethasone; methylprednisolone; prednisolone; triamcinolone; triamcinolonehexacetonide.
Biological agents: galactosaminoglycuronogoglycan sulfate; glycosaminoglycan (GAG); glycosaminoglycan-peptide complex; glycosaminoglycan polysulfate; hyaluronic acid (HA); mucopolysaccharide polysulfuric acid ester (MPA); sodium hyaluronate. Other agents used in mixed trials: betamethasone; calcium lactate; glucosamine sulfate; hydrocortisone; orgotein; pantothenic acid; trolamine salicylate cream; S-adenosylmethionine; silicone oil; topical capsaicin.
Participants included in the review
There were 7,403 patients with osteoarthritis of the knee; 4,990 in 45 NSAIDs trials, 241 in 3 analgesic trials, 174 in 5 steroid trials, 438 in 9 biological agent trials, 1,587 in 18 mixed trials.
Outcomes assessed in the review
Pain; global assessments made by either investigator or patient; knee range of motion; functional status. Only trials that specifically included information about effects on the knee were included.
How were decisions on the relevance of primary studies made?
The authors do not state how the papers were selected for the review, or how many of the authors performed the selection.