Image_1_Efficacy of Non-pharmacologic Auxiliary Treatments in Improving Defecation Function in Children With Chronic Idiopathic Constipation: A System.TIF (283.38 kB)
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Image_1_Efficacy of Non-pharmacologic Auxiliary Treatments in Improving Defecation Function in Children With Chronic Idiopathic Constipation: A Systematic Review and Network Meta-analysis.TIF

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posted on 27.04.2021, 04:06 authored by Jie Tang, Huijuan Li, Weibing Tang

Background: Non-pharmacologic auxiliary treatments have been considered crucial therapies for treating chronic idiopathic constipation (CIC) during the past decades worldwide. Several treatment patterns are available, but their relative efficacy is obscure because there are no head-to-head randomized controlled trials, especially in children. We conducted this network meta-analysis to evalute the effectiveness of these therapies in improving defecation function based on their direct comparisons with standard medical care.

Methods: Medline, Embase, and Cochrane Central were searched for randomized controlled trials (RCTs) published in English from inception to October 2020, assessing the efficacy of auxiliary therapies (behavior therapy, physiotherapy, biofeedback, or anorectal manometry) in children with CIC. We extracted data for endpoints, risk of bias, and evidence quality. Eligible studies in the meta-analysis reported the data of a dichotomous assessment of overall response to treatment (response or not) or defecation frequency per week after treatment. The hierarchical Bayesian network meta-analysis was used in the study. We chose a conservative methodology, random effects model, to pool data which could handle the heterogeneity well. The relative risk (RR) with 95% confidence intervals (CIs) was calculated for dichotomous outcomes. For continuous results, weighted mean difference (WMD) with related CIs was calculated. The included treatments were ranked to define the probability of being the best treatment.

Results: Seven RCTs (838 patients) met inclusion and endpoint criteria. Based on an endpoint of the absence of constipation (Rome criteria) with laxatives allowed, physiotherapy plus standard medical care (SMC) had the highest probability (84%) to bethe most effective therapy. When the treatment response was defined as an absence of constipation with not laxatives allowed, biofeedback plus SMC ranked first (probability 52%). Physiotherapy plus SMC ranked first when the endpoint was based on defecation frequency per week with laxatives allowed (probability 86%).

Conclusion: Almost all auxiliary therapies are effective complementary therapies for treating CIC, but they needed to be used simultaneously with SMC. Nevertheless, because of the small number of eligible studies and their small sample sizes, the differences in treatment duration and the endpoints, large sample RCTs with long-term follow-up are required for further investigation.

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