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Multiple-Treatments
Meta-Analysis
Dr Georgia Salanti & Sofia Dias
With thanks to Julian Higgins, Tony Ades, Andrea Cipriani, Corrado Barbui
University of Ioannina
Greece
Outline – Part I
• Concept
• Simple indirect comparison
• Advantages of the methods
• MTM using frequentist meta-regression
• Presentation of results
• The notion of Inconsistency
Outline – Part II
• Bayesian MTM model
• Comparison of models
Evidence Based Medicine
Levels of evidence For Therapy, Prevention, Aetiology and Harm
Randomized Controlled trials (RCTs)
Meta-analysis of RCTs
Two
interventions
Centre for Evidence Based Medicine, University of Oxford
Cohort studies, Case-control studies
• Backbone: meta-analysis
• Rigorous statistical models
• Clinical practice guidelines
– NICE, WHO, The Cochrane Collaboration, HuGENet
Fluoxetine: 28€ Venlafaxine:111€ Sertaline: 76 €
“Although Mirtazapine is likely to have a faster onset of
action than Sertraline and Paroxetine no significant
differences were observed...”
“Venlafaxine tends to have a
favorable trend in response rates
compared with duloxetine”
“…statistically significant differences in
terms of efficacy …. between
Fluoxetine and Venlafaxine, but the
clinical meaning of these differences is
uncertain…”
“…meta-analysis
highlighted a trend
in favour of
Sertraline over
other Fluoxetine”
12 new generation antidepressants
19 meta-analyses published in the last two years
paroxetine
sertraline
citalopram
fluoxetine
fluvoxamine
milnacipran
venlafaxine
reboxetine
bupropion
mirtazapineduloxetine
escitalopram
sertraline
milnacipran
bupropion
paroxetine
milnacipran
duloxetine
escitalopram
fluvoxamine
?
12 new generation antidepressants
19 meta-analyses published in the last two years
paroxetine
sertraline
citalopram
fluoxetine
fluvoxamine
milnacipran
venlafaxine
reboxetine
bupropion
mirtazapineduloxetine
escitalopram
milnacipran
bupropion
paroxetine
milnacipran
escitalopram
fluvoxamine
paroxetine 0%
sertraline 7%
citalopram 0%
escitalopram 26%
fluoxetine 0%
fluvoxamine 0%
milnacipran 1%
venlafaxine 11%
reboxetine 0%
bupropion 0%
mirtazapine 54%
duloxetine 0%
sertraline duloxetine?
Probability to be
the best
12 new generation antidepressants
19 meta-analyses published in the last two years
paroxetine
sertraline
citalopram
fluoxetine
fluvoxamine
milnacipran
venlafaxine
reboxetine
bupropion
mirtazapineduloxetine
escitalopram
milnacipran
bupropion
paroxetine
milnacipran
escitalopram
fluvoxamine
paroxetine 0%
sertraline 7%
citalopram 0%
escitalopram 26%
fluoxetine 0%
fluvoxamine 0%
milnacipran 1%
venlafaxine 11%
reboxetine 0%
bupropion 0%
mirtazapine 54%
duloxetine 0%
sertraline duloxetine?
Probability to be
the best
Current meta-analysis misses data!
12 new generation antidepressants
19 meta-analyses published in the last two years
A new methodological framework
Two interventions
Randomized Controlled trials (RCTs)
Meta-analysis of RCTs
Cohort studies, Case-control studies
Two interventions
Multiple-treatments meta-analysis
Many different
intervention
Randomized Controlled trials (RCTs)
Meta-analysis of RCTs
Cohort studies, Case-control studies
A new methodological framework
paroxetine
sertraline
citalopram
fluoxetine
fluvoxamine
milnacipran
venlafaxine
reboxetine
bupropion
mirtazapine
duloxetine
escitalopram
Lancet 2009 Cipriani, Fukurawa, Salanti et al
Network of experimental comparisons
sertraline
citalopram
fluoxetine
Lancet 2009 Cipriani, Fukurawa, Salanti et al
Network of experimental comparisons
Indirect comparison
A B C
• We can obtain an indirect estimate for A vs B from
RCTs comparing A vs C and B vs C:
MDAB = MDAC – MDBC
Var(MDAB) = Var(MDAC) + Var(MDBC)
Placebo
Toothpaste
Varnish
Rinse
Gel
69
4
1
6
31
13
3
1
No treat
9
4
4
Placebo
Toothpaste
Gel
69
13
?
Simple exercise: prevented mean caries
Comparison MD CIs
Placebo vs Toothpaste -0.34 (-0.41, -0.28)
Placebo vs Gel -0.19 (-0.30, -0.10)
How to compare Gel to Toothpaste?
Estimate indirect MD and a 95% CI
Toothpaste Gel Placebo
Flash back to stats…
Each estimate has uncertainty as conveyed by the
variance, the standard error and the 95% CI
Variance=SE2
95% CI (Low CI, High CI): x-1.96·SE to x+1.96·SE :
SE=(High CI – Low CI)/3.92
Pen and paper (and calculator!) exercise!
Indirect MDGvsT= MDPvsT – MDPvsG
Indirect MDGvsT = -0.34 – (-0.19)= -0.15
Variance Indirect MDGvsT = Variance MDPvsT + Variance MDPvsG
Variance MDPvsT = ((high CI –low CI)/3.92)2
Variance MDPvsT= ((-0.28– (-0.41))/3.92)2 =0.0011
Variance MDGvsT= ((-0.10– (-0.30))/3.92)2 =0.0026
Variance Indirect MDGvsT = 0.0011+0.0026=0.0037
SE Indirect MDGvsT = sqrt(0.0037)=0.061
95% CI for Indirect MDGvsT = (-0.15 – 1.96·0.061, -0.15 + 1.96·0.061)
95% CI for Indirect MDGvsT = (-0.27, -0.03)
Placebo
Toothpaste
Varnish
Rinse
Gel
69
4
1
3
6
31
13
3
1
No treat
9
4
4
Combining direct and indirect evidence
• Inverse variance method
• Each estimate is ‘weighted’ by the inverse of the
variance
• Then a common (pooled) result is obtained!
IndirectDirect
Indirect
Indirect
Direct
Direct
MDMD
var
1
var
1
var
1
var
1
MDpooled



You can do this with any measure... lnOR, lnRR, RD, mean difference, HR, Peto’s lnOR
etc…
Indirect MDGvsT = - 0.15
Variance Indirect MDGvsT = 0.0037
Direct MDGvsT = 0.04
Variance Direct MDGvsT = 0.011
Pooled MDGvsT= -0.14
037.0
1
011.0
1
15.0
0037.0
1
04.0
011.0
1
MDpooled




sertraline
citalopram
fluoxetine
Lancet 2009 Cipriani, Fukurawa, Salanti et al
Network of experimental comparisons
LORSF
v1
LORCF
v2
Indirect estimation
LORSC = LORSF - LORCF
Var(LORSC) = v1+ v2
LORSC
Var(LORSC)
sertraline
citalopram
fluoxetine
Lancet 2009 Cipriani, Fukurawa, Salanti et al
Network of experimental comparisons
LORSF
v1
LORFC
v2
LORSC
Var(LORSC)
Combine the direct estimate
with the indirect estimate
using IV methods
Get a combined LOR!
v4<v3
LORSF
v4
Combined
LORSC
v3
Indirect estimation
LORSC = LORSF - LORCF
Var(LORSC) = v1+ v2
paroxetine
sertraline
citalopram
fluoxetine
fluvoxamine
milnacipran
venlafaxine
reboxetine
bupropion
mirtazapine
duloxetine
escitalopram
Lancet 2009 Cipriani, Fukurawa, Salanti et al
Network of experimental comparisons
paroxetine
sertraline
citalopram
fluoxetine
fluvoxamine
milnacipran
venlafaxine
reboxetine
bupropion
mirtazapine
duloxetine
escitalopram
Lancet 2009 Cipriani, Fukurawa, Salanti et al
Network of experimental comparisons
paroxetine
sertraline
citalopram
fluoxetine
fluvoxamine
milnacipran
venlafaxine
reboxetine
bupropion
mirtazapine
duloxetine
escitalopram
Lancet 2009 Cipriani, Fukurawa, Salanti et al
Network of experimental comparisons
paroxetine
sertraline
citalopram
fluoxetine
fluvoxamine
milnacipran
venlafaxine
reboxetine
bupropion
mirtazapine
duloxetine
escitalopram
Lancet 2009 Cipriani, Fukurawa, Salanti et al
Network of experimental comparisons
paroxetine
sertraline
citalopram
fluoxetine
fluvoxamine
milnacipran
venlafaxine
reboxetine
bupropion
mirtazapine
duloxetine
escitalopram
Lancet 2009 Cipriani, Fukurawa, Salanti et al
Network of experimental comparisons
paroxetine
sertraline
citalopram
fluoxetine
fluvoxamine
milnacipran
venlafaxine
reboxetine
bupropion
mirtazapine
duloxetine
escitalopram
Choose basic parameters
paroxetine
sertraline
citalopram
fluoxetine
fluvoxamine
milnacipran
venlafaxine
reboxetine
bupropion
mirtazapine
duloxetine
escitalopram
All other contrasts are functional!
paroxetine
sertraline
citalopram
fluoxetine
fluvoxamine
milnacipran
venlafaxine
reboxetine
bupropion
mirtazapine
duloxetine
escitalopram
All other contrasts are functional!
paroxetine
sertraline
citalopram
fluoxetine
fluvoxamine
milnacipran
venlafaxine
reboxetine
bupropion
mirtazapine
duloxetine
escitalopram
All other contrasts are functional!
Advantages of MTM
– Ranking of many treatments for the same
condition (see later)
– Comprehensive use of all available data
(indirect evidence)
– Comparison of interventions which haven’t
been directly compared in any experiment
Bevacizumab
Fluorouracil and leucovorin
Fluorouracil and
leucovorin+bevacizumab
Fluorouracil and
leucovorin+irinotecan
Fluorouracil and
leucovorin+
irinotecan+bevacizumab
Fluorouracil and
leucovorin+irinotecan
+oxaliplatinFluorouracil+leucovorin+oxaliplatin
Fluorouracil and leucovorin +
oxaliplatin + bevacizumab
Irinotecan
Irinotecan + oxaliplatin
Oxaliplatin
Colorectal Cancer
Golfinopoulos V, Salanti G, Pavlidis N, Ioannidis JP: Survival and disease-progression benefits with treatment regimens for advanced colorectal cancer: a meta-analysis. Lancet Oncol
2007, 8: 898-911.
Advantages of MTM
– Ranking of many treatments for the same
condition (see later)
– Comprehensive use of all available data
(indirect evidence)
– Comparison of interventions which haven’t
been directly compared in any experiment
– Improved precision for each comparison
paroxetine
sertraline
citalopram
fluoxetine
fluvoxamine
milnacipran
venlafaxine
reboxetine
bupropion
mirtazapine
duloxetine
escitalopram
Lancet 2009 Cipriani, Fukurawa, Salanti et al
Network of experimental comparisons
Fluoxetine vs Milnacipran (response to treatment)
Meta-analysis: 1.15 (0.72, 1.85)
MTM: 0.97 (0.69, 1.32)
Why use Bayesian statistics for
meta-analysis?
• Natural approach for accumulating data
• Repeated updating of meta-analyses fine:
posterior should always reflect latest beliefs
• People naturally think as Bayesians:
they have degrees of belief about the effects of
treatment, which change when they see new data
• Probability statements about true effects of
treatment easier to understand than confidence
intervals and p -values
Why use Bayesian statistics for
MTM?
• Bayesian approach is easier to account for
correlations induced by multi-arm trials
• Estimation of predictive intervals is straightforward
• Estimation of ranking probabilities is straightforward
• MTM with two-arm trials only
(or ignoring the correlations)
Easy with frequentist meta-regression
Fixed effect meta-analysis
Trial
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
11
12
Treatment better Control better
Effect estimate
-1 0 1
random error
common
(fixed) effect
μ
yi
i
Random effects meta-analysis
study-specific effect
distribution of effects
Trial
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
11
12
Treatment better Control better
Effect estimate
-1 0 1
random error
τμ
θi
yi i
Random effects meta-regression
Explanatory
variable, x
yi = intersept + slope x
Random error
Τmeta-regmeta-reg
i
• We observe yi in each study (e.g. the log(OR))
• Meta-regression using the treatments as
‘covariates’
• AC, AB, BC studies, chose C as reference
Meta-regression
• The AC studies have (1,0), the BC studies (0,1) [basic]
• AB studies have (1,-1) [functional]
yi = C (Treati=A) + BC (Treati=B)
Parametrisation of the network
t-PA
Angioplasty
Acc t-PA
Anistreplase
Retaplase
Streptokinase
Choose basic parameters
Write all other contrasts
as linear functions of the
basic parameters to build
the design matrix
LOR for death in treatments for MI
LOR for death in treatments for MI
No. studies Streptokinase t-PA Anistreplase Acc t-PA Angioplasty Reteplase
3
1
1
3
1
1
2
2
2
Use as ‘covariates’
yi= μA t-PA  μB Anistreplasei μC Accelerated t-PAi  μD Angioplastyi  μE Reteplasei
-1 1 0 0 0 0
-1 0 1 0 0 0
-1 0 0 1 0 0
-1 0 0 0 1 0
-1 0 0 0 0 1
-1 1 0 0 0
-1 0 0 1 0
0 0 -1 1 0
0 0 -1 0 1
0
0
0
0
0
0 0 0 0
0 0 0 0
0 0 0 0
0 0 0 0
0 0 0 0
0 0 0
0 0 0
0 0 0
0 0 0
Lumley 2002, Stat Med
 X),,,,(Y EDCBA

LOR for death in treatments for MI
Matrix of all
observations
Vector of
LogOR
yi= μA t-PA  μB Anistreplasei μC Accelerated t-PAi  μD Angioplastyi  μE Reteplasei
Design
matrix
Random
effects
matrix
)V,X(N~Y μ ))τ(diag,(N~ 2
∆ 0
Variance-covariance
matrix (for the
observed LOR)
LOR compared to Streptokinase (RE model)
- 0.11 (0.06)
- 0.43 (0.20)
- 0.15 (0.05)
-0.00 (0.03)
-0.02 (0.03)
LOR (SE)Treatment
t-PA
Anistreplase
Accelerated t-PA
Angioplasty
Reteplase
 X),,,,(Y EDCBA

1.01)(0.80,0.90
0.96)(0.44,0.65
0.95)(0.78,0.86
1.06)(0.94,1.00
1.04)(0.92,0.98
95% CIOR
What’s the problem with multi-arm trials?
• We need to take into account the correlations between
the estimates that come from the same study
• A B C
yi
BC
yi
AC
• The random effects (θi
BC, θi
AC) that refer to the same trial
are correlated as well
• You have to built in the correlation matrix for the
observed effects, and the correlation matrix for the
random effects
)V,X(N~Y μ ))τ(diag,(N~ 2
∆ 0
Study No. arms # Data Contrast
i=1 T1=2 1 y1,1, v1,1 AB
i=2 T2=2 1 y2,1, v2,1 AC
i=3 T3=2 1 y3,1, v3,1 BC
i=4 T4=3 2
y4,1, v4,1
y4,2, v4,2
cov(y4,1, y4,2)
AB
AC
Hypothetical example
Basic parameters: AB and AC
1,1 1,11,1
2,1 2,12,1
3,1 3,13,1
4,1 4,14,1
4,2 4,2 4,2
1 0
0 1
1 1
1 0
0 1
 
 

 

 
 
      
      
                  
       
      
      
      
AB
AC
y
y
y
y
y
Meta-regression
Study No. arms # Data Contrast
i=1 T1=2 1 y1,1, v1,1 AB
i=2 T2=2 1 y2,1, v2,1 AC
i=3 T3=2 1 y3,1, v3,1 BC
i=4
T4=3 2
y4,1, v4,1
y4,2, v4,2
cov(y4,1, y4,2)
AB
AC
1,1 1,11,1
2,1 2,12,1
3,1 3,13,1
4,1 4,14,1
4,2 4,2 4,2
1 0
0 1
1 1
1 0
0 1
 
 

 

 
 
      
      
                  
       
      
      
      
AB
AC
y
y
y
y
y
Study No. arms # Data Contrast
i=1 T1=2 1 y1,1, v1,1 AB
i=2 T2=2 1 y2,1, v2,1 AC
i=3 T3=2 1 y3,1, v3,1 BC
i=4
T4=3 2
y4,1, v4,1
y4,2, v4,2
cov(y4,1, y4,2)
AB
AC
Take into account correlation
in observations
 
 
1,11,1
2,12,1
3,13,1
4,1 4,1 4,24,1
4,2 4,1 4,2 4,2
0 0 0 00
0 0 0 00
0 0 0 0~ ,0
0 0 0 cov ,0
0 0 0 0 cov ,





     
     
     
     
     
     
           
v
v
vN
v y y
y y v
1,1 1,11,1
2,1 2,12,1
3,1 3,13,1
4,1 4,14,1
4,2 4,2 4,2
1 0
0 1
1 1
1 0
0 1
 
 

 

 
 
      
      
                  
       
      
      
      
AB
AC
y
y
y
y
y
Study No. arms # Data Contrast
i=1 T1=2 1 y1,1, v1,1 AB
i=2 T2=2 1 y2,1, v2,1 AC
i=3 T3=2 1 y3,1, v3,1 BC
i=4
T4=3 2
y4,1, v4,1
y4,2, v4,2
cov(y4,1, y4,2)
AB
AC
Take into account correlation
in random effects
 
 
2
1,1
2
2,1
2
3,1
2
4,1 4,24,1
2
4,2 4,1 4,2
0 0 0 00
0 0 0 00
0 0 0 0~ ,0
0 0 0 cov ,0
0 0 0 0 cov ,



  
   
     
     
     
     
     
     
            
AB
AC
BC
AB
AC
N
How to fit such a model?
• MLwiN
• SAS, R
• STATA using metan
Ranking measures from MTM
• With many treatments judgments based
on pairwise effect sizes are difficult to
make
• Example: Antidepressants
Ranking measures from MTM
• With many treatments judgments based
on pairwise effect sizes are difficult to
make
• Example: Antidepressants
• Example: Antiplatelet regimens for serious
vascular events
Aspirin vs Placebo
Thienopyridines vs Aspirin
Thienopyridines vs Placebo
0.5 1 1.5 2
0.32
0.03
<0.01
Aspirin+Dipyridamole vs Aspirin+Thienopyridines
Aspirin+Dipyridamole vs Aspirin
Aspirin+Dipyridamole vs Placebo
Aspirin+Dipyridamole vs Thienopyridines
0
Aspirin+Thienopyridines vs Aspirin
Aspirin+Thienopyridines vs Placebo
Aspirin+Thienopyridines vs Thienopyridines0.23
0.05
<0.01
0.19
<0.01
<0.01
P-value Comparison
Odds Ratio for serious vascular event
Favors first treatment Favors second treatment
Serious vascular events with antiplatelet regimens
Probabilities instead of effect sizes
• Estimate for each treatment the
probability to be the best
• This is straightforward within a Bayesian
framework
%
probability
A B C D
j=1 0.25 0.50 0.25 0.00
j=2 0.50 0.75 0.75 0.00
j=3 0.75 1.00 1.00 0.25
j=4 1.00 1.00 1.00 1.00
%
probability
A B C D
j=1 0.25 0.50 0.25 0.00
j=2 0.25 0.25 0.50 0.00
j=3 0.25 0.25 0.25 0.25
j=4 0.25 0 0 0.75
i the treatment
j the rank
Rank of paroxetine
Probability
2 4 6 8 10 12
0.00.20.40.6
Rank of sertraline
2 4 6 8 10 12
0.00.20.40.6
Rank of citalopram
2 4 6 8 10 12
0.00.20.40.6
Rank of escitalopram
2 4 6 8 10 12
0.00.20.40.6
Rank of fluoxetine
Probability
2 4 6 8 10 12
0.00.20.40.6
Rank of fluvoxamine
2 4 6 8 10 12
0.00.20.40.6
Rank of milnacipran
2 4 6 8 10 12
0.00.20.40.6
Rank of venlafaxine
2 4 6 8 10 12
0.00.20.40.6
Rank of reboxetine
Probability
2 4 6 8 10 12
0.00.20.40.6
Rank of bupropion
2 4 6 8 10 12
0.00.20.40.6
Rank of mirtazapine
2 4 6 8 10 12
0.00.20.40.6
Rank of duloxetine
2 4 6 8 10 12
0.00.20.40.6
Ranking for efficacy (solid line) and acceptability (dotted line). Ranking: probability to be the best treatment, to be the second
best, the third best and so on, among the 12 comparisons).
%
probability
A B C D
j=1 0.25 0.50 0.25 0.00
j=2 0.50 0.75 0.75 0.00
j=3 0.75 1.00 1.00 0.25
j=4 1.00 1.00 1.00 1.00
The areas under the
cumulative curves for the
four treatments of the
example above are
A=0.5
B=0.75
C=0.67
D=0.08
i the treatment
j the rank
Rank of A
CumulativeProbability
1.0 1.5 2.0 2.5 3.0 3.5 4.0
0.00.20.40.60.81.0
Rank of B
1.0 1.5 2.0 2.5 3.0 3.5 4.0
0.00.20.40.60.81.0
Rank of C
CumulativeProbability
1.0 1.5 2.0 2.5 3.0 3.5 4.0
0.00.20.40.60.81.0
Rank of D
1.0 1.5 2.0 2.5 3.0 3.5 4.0
0.00.20.40.60.81.0
Preliminary results for ranking 12 antidepressants
Rank of paroxetine
CumulativeProbability
2 4 6 8 10 12
Rank of sertraline
2 4 6 8 10 12
Rank of reboxetine
CumulativeProbability
2 4 6 8 10 12
020406080100
Rank of mirtazapine
2 4 6 8 10 12
35% 77%
1%
92%
020406080100
020406080100020406080100
A comprehensive ranking measure
Compared to an imaginary antidepressant which is ‘always the best’, mirtazapine reaches up to
92% of its potential!
• What is inconsistency?
• How it manifests itself?
Inconsistency
Inconsistency
Direct t-PA vs Angioplasty=  0.41 (0.36)
0.02 (0.03)
- 0.48 (0.43)
Calculate a difference
between direct and
indirect estimates
t-PA
Angioplasty
Streptokinase
LOR (SE) for MI
Indirect t-PA vs Angioplasty =  0.46 (0.18)
Inconsistency in the loop = 0.05
Inconsistency - Heterogeneity
• Heterogeneity: ‘excessive’ discrepancy among
study-specific effects
• Inconsistency: it is the excessive discrepancy
among source-specific effects (direct and
indirect)
14 15 16 17
AC=15.5
7 8 9 10
BC=8.2
1 2 3 4
AB=2.3
• In 3 cases out of 44 there was an important
discrepancy between direct/indirect effect.
• Direction of the discrepancy is inconsistent
Glenny et al HTA 2005
Inconsistency
Empirical Evidence
Placebo
Toothpaste
Gel
Direct SMD(TvsG) = 0.04
Indirect SMD(TvsG) = – 0.15
IF= 0.11
P-Gel
P-Toothpaste
I cannot learn about Toothpaste versus Gel through Placebo!
Compare Fluoride treatments in preventing dental caries
What can cause inconsistency?
Inappropriate common comparator
Screening for lung cancer
Baker & Kramer, BMC Meth 2002
Chest X-ray
Standard
Spiral CT
A new therapy (possibly unreported in the trials) decreases the mortality but in
different rates for the three screening methods
Percent receiving new therapy
Mortality
30 70
Trial 1:
Chest X-ray=
Standard
Trial 2:
Spiral-CT=
Standard
New Trial:
Spiral-CT <
Chest X-ray
100
What can cause inconsistency?
Confounding by trial characteristics
age
Effectiveness
Alfacalcidol +Ca
Calcitriol + Ca
Ca
What can cause inconsistency?
Confounding by trial characteristics
Vitamin D for Osteoporosis-related fractures, Richy et al Calcif Tissue 2005, 76;276
Vitamin D +Ca
Different characteristics across comparisons may cause inconsistency
• There is not confounding by trial characteristics that are
related to both the comparison being made and the
magnitude of treatment difference
• The trials in two different comparisons are exchangeable
(other than interventions being compared)
• Equivalent to the assumption ‘the unobserved
treatment is missing at random’
– Is this plausible?
– Selection of the comparator is not often random!
Assumptions of MTM
• Check the distribution of important
characteristics per treatment comparison
– Usually unobserved….
– Time (of randomization, of recruitment) might be
associated with changes to the background risk that
may violate the assumptions of MTM
• Get a taste by looking for inconsistency in
closed loops
Inconsistency
Detecting
No. studies T G R V P Fup Baseline Year Water F
(yes/no)
69 2.6 11.8 1968 0.2
13 2.3 3.8 1973 0.2
30 2.4 5.9 1973 0.1
3 2.3 2.7 1983 0
3 2.7 NA 1968 0.66
6 2.8 14.7 1969 0
1 2 0.9 1978 0
1 1 NA 1977 0
1 3 7.4 1991 NA
4 2.5 7.6 1981 0.33
Compare the characteristics!
Salanti G, Marinho V, Higgins JP: A case study of multiple-treatments meta-analysis demonstrates that covariates
should be considered. J Clin Epidemiol 2009, 62: 857-864.
• Check the distribution of important characteristics per
treatment comparison
– Usually unobserved….
– Time (of randomization, of recruitment) might be associated with
changes to the background risk that may violate the assumptions of MTM
• Get a taste by looking for inconsistency in closed loops
• Fit a model that relaxes consistency
– Add an extra ‘random effect’ per loop (Lu & Ades JASA 2005)
Inconsistency
Detecting
Placebo
Toothpaste
Varnish
Rinse
Gel
69
4
1
3
6
31
13
3
1
No treat
9
4
4
-1.0 0.0 0.5 1.0 1.5 2.0
Closed loops
NGV
NGR
NRV
PDG
PDV
PDR
DGV
DGR
DRV
PGV
PGR
PRV
GRV
AGRV
PDGV
PDGR
PDRV
DGRV
PGRV
PDGRV
Evaluation of concordance within closed loops
Estimates with 95% confidence intervals
R routine in http://www.dhe.med.uoi.gr/software.htm
Salanti G, Marinho V, Higgins JP: A case study of multiple-treatments meta-analysis demonstrates that covariates should be
considered. J Clin Epidemiol 2009, 62: 857-864.
• Check the distribution of important characteristics per
treatment comparison
– Usually unobserved….
– Time (of randomization, of recruitment) might be associated with
changes to the background risk that may violate the assumptions of MTM
• Get a taste by looking for inconsistency in closed loops
• Fit a model that relaxes consistency
– Add an extra ‘random effect’ per loop (Lu & Ades JASA 2005)
Inconsistency
Detecting
Inconsistency - Heterogeneity
RCTs
Meta-analysis of RCTs With homogeneity2 interventions
With consistencyMultiple meta-analyses of RCTsbest intervention
References
1. Baker SG, Kramer BS: The transitive fallacy for randomized trials: if A bests B and B bests C in separate trials, is A
better than C? BMC Med Res Methodol 2002, 2: 13.
2. Caldwell DM, Ades AE, Higgins JP: Simultaneous comparison of multiple treatments: combining direct and indirect
evidence. BMJ 2005, 331: 897-900.
3. Cipriani A, Furukawa TA, Salanti G, Geddes JR, Higgins JP, Churchill R et al.: Comparative efficacy and acceptability of 12
new-generation antidepressants: a multiple-treatments meta-analysis. Lancet 2009, 373: 746-758.
4. Cooper NJ, Sutton AJ, Lu G, Khunti K: Mixed comparison of stroke prevention treatments in individuals with
nonrheumatic atrial fibrillation. Arch Intern Med 2006, 166: 1269-1275.
5. Golfinopoulos V, Salanti G, Pavlidis N, Ioannidis JP: Survival and disease-progression benefits with treatment regimens
for advanced colorectal cancer: a meta-analysis. Lancet Oncol 2007, 8: 898-911.
6. Heres S, Davis J, Maino K, Jetzinger E, Kissling W, Leucht S: Why olanzapine beats risperidone, risperidone beats
quetiapine, and quetiapine beats olanzapine: an exploratory analysis of head-to-head comparison studies of second-
generation antipsychotics. Am J Psychiatry 2006, 163: 185-194.
7. Jansen JP, Crawford B, Bergman G, Stam W: Bayesian Meta-Analysis of Multiple Treatment Comparisons: An
Introduction to Mixed Treatment Comparisons. Value Health 2008.
8. Lu G, Ades AE: Assessing Evidence Inconsistency in Mixed Treatment Comparisons. Journal of American Statistical
Association 2006, 101: 447-459.
9. Lu G, Ades AE: Combination of direct and indirect evidence in mixed treatment comparisons. Stat Med 2004, 23: 3105-
3124.
10. Salanti G, Higgins JP, Ades AE, Ioannidis JP: Evaluation of networks of randomized trials. Stat Methods Med Res 2008,
17: 279-301.
11. Salanti G, Marinho V, Higgins JP: A case study of multiple-treatments meta-analysis demonstrates that covariates
should be considered. J Clin Epidemiol 2009, 62: 857-864.
12. Song F, Harvey I, Lilford R: Adjusted indirect comparison may be less biased than direct comparison for evaluating
new pharmaceutical interventions. J Clin Epidemiol 2008, 61: 455-463.
13. Sutton A, Ades AE, Cooper N, Abrams K: Use of indirect and mixed treatment comparisons for technology assessment.
Pharmacoeconomics 2008, 26: 753-767.
14. Welton NJ, Cooper NJ, Ades AE, Lu G, Sutton AJ: Mixed treatment comparison with multiple outcomes reported
inconsistently across trials: Evaluation of antivirals for treatment of influenza A and B. Stat Med 2008, 29: 5620-5639.

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2010 smg training_cardiff_day2_session1_salanti

  • 1. Multiple-Treatments Meta-Analysis Dr Georgia Salanti & Sofia Dias With thanks to Julian Higgins, Tony Ades, Andrea Cipriani, Corrado Barbui University of Ioannina Greece
  • 2. Outline – Part I • Concept • Simple indirect comparison • Advantages of the methods • MTM using frequentist meta-regression • Presentation of results • The notion of Inconsistency
  • 3. Outline – Part II • Bayesian MTM model • Comparison of models
  • 4. Evidence Based Medicine Levels of evidence For Therapy, Prevention, Aetiology and Harm Randomized Controlled trials (RCTs) Meta-analysis of RCTs Two interventions Centre for Evidence Based Medicine, University of Oxford Cohort studies, Case-control studies • Backbone: meta-analysis • Rigorous statistical models • Clinical practice guidelines – NICE, WHO, The Cochrane Collaboration, HuGENet
  • 5. Fluoxetine: 28€ Venlafaxine:111€ Sertaline: 76 € “Although Mirtazapine is likely to have a faster onset of action than Sertraline and Paroxetine no significant differences were observed...” “Venlafaxine tends to have a favorable trend in response rates compared with duloxetine” “…statistically significant differences in terms of efficacy …. between Fluoxetine and Venlafaxine, but the clinical meaning of these differences is uncertain…” “…meta-analysis highlighted a trend in favour of Sertraline over other Fluoxetine” 12 new generation antidepressants 19 meta-analyses published in the last two years
  • 7. paroxetine sertraline citalopram fluoxetine fluvoxamine milnacipran venlafaxine reboxetine bupropion mirtazapineduloxetine escitalopram milnacipran bupropion paroxetine milnacipran escitalopram fluvoxamine paroxetine 0% sertraline 7% citalopram 0% escitalopram 26% fluoxetine 0% fluvoxamine 0% milnacipran 1% venlafaxine 11% reboxetine 0% bupropion 0% mirtazapine 54% duloxetine 0% sertraline duloxetine? Probability to be the best 12 new generation antidepressants 19 meta-analyses published in the last two years
  • 8. paroxetine sertraline citalopram fluoxetine fluvoxamine milnacipran venlafaxine reboxetine bupropion mirtazapineduloxetine escitalopram milnacipran bupropion paroxetine milnacipran escitalopram fluvoxamine paroxetine 0% sertraline 7% citalopram 0% escitalopram 26% fluoxetine 0% fluvoxamine 0% milnacipran 1% venlafaxine 11% reboxetine 0% bupropion 0% mirtazapine 54% duloxetine 0% sertraline duloxetine? Probability to be the best Current meta-analysis misses data! 12 new generation antidepressants 19 meta-analyses published in the last two years
  • 9. A new methodological framework Two interventions Randomized Controlled trials (RCTs) Meta-analysis of RCTs Cohort studies, Case-control studies
  • 10. Two interventions Multiple-treatments meta-analysis Many different intervention Randomized Controlled trials (RCTs) Meta-analysis of RCTs Cohort studies, Case-control studies A new methodological framework
  • 12. sertraline citalopram fluoxetine Lancet 2009 Cipriani, Fukurawa, Salanti et al Network of experimental comparisons
  • 13. Indirect comparison A B C • We can obtain an indirect estimate for A vs B from RCTs comparing A vs C and B vs C: MDAB = MDAC – MDBC Var(MDAB) = Var(MDAC) + Var(MDBC)
  • 16. Simple exercise: prevented mean caries Comparison MD CIs Placebo vs Toothpaste -0.34 (-0.41, -0.28) Placebo vs Gel -0.19 (-0.30, -0.10) How to compare Gel to Toothpaste? Estimate indirect MD and a 95% CI Toothpaste Gel Placebo
  • 17. Flash back to stats… Each estimate has uncertainty as conveyed by the variance, the standard error and the 95% CI Variance=SE2 95% CI (Low CI, High CI): x-1.96·SE to x+1.96·SE : SE=(High CI – Low CI)/3.92
  • 18. Pen and paper (and calculator!) exercise! Indirect MDGvsT= MDPvsT – MDPvsG Indirect MDGvsT = -0.34 – (-0.19)= -0.15 Variance Indirect MDGvsT = Variance MDPvsT + Variance MDPvsG Variance MDPvsT = ((high CI –low CI)/3.92)2 Variance MDPvsT= ((-0.28– (-0.41))/3.92)2 =0.0011 Variance MDGvsT= ((-0.10– (-0.30))/3.92)2 =0.0026 Variance Indirect MDGvsT = 0.0011+0.0026=0.0037 SE Indirect MDGvsT = sqrt(0.0037)=0.061 95% CI for Indirect MDGvsT = (-0.15 – 1.96·0.061, -0.15 + 1.96·0.061) 95% CI for Indirect MDGvsT = (-0.27, -0.03)
  • 20. Combining direct and indirect evidence • Inverse variance method • Each estimate is ‘weighted’ by the inverse of the variance • Then a common (pooled) result is obtained! IndirectDirect Indirect Indirect Direct Direct MDMD var 1 var 1 var 1 var 1 MDpooled   
  • 21. You can do this with any measure... lnOR, lnRR, RD, mean difference, HR, Peto’s lnOR etc… Indirect MDGvsT = - 0.15 Variance Indirect MDGvsT = 0.0037 Direct MDGvsT = 0.04 Variance Direct MDGvsT = 0.011 Pooled MDGvsT= -0.14 037.0 1 011.0 1 15.0 0037.0 1 04.0 011.0 1 MDpooled    
  • 22. sertraline citalopram fluoxetine Lancet 2009 Cipriani, Fukurawa, Salanti et al Network of experimental comparisons LORSF v1 LORCF v2 Indirect estimation LORSC = LORSF - LORCF Var(LORSC) = v1+ v2 LORSC Var(LORSC)
  • 23. sertraline citalopram fluoxetine Lancet 2009 Cipriani, Fukurawa, Salanti et al Network of experimental comparisons LORSF v1 LORFC v2 LORSC Var(LORSC) Combine the direct estimate with the indirect estimate using IV methods Get a combined LOR! v4<v3 LORSF v4 Combined LORSC v3 Indirect estimation LORSC = LORSF - LORCF Var(LORSC) = v1+ v2
  • 33. Advantages of MTM – Ranking of many treatments for the same condition (see later) – Comprehensive use of all available data (indirect evidence) – Comparison of interventions which haven’t been directly compared in any experiment
  • 34. Bevacizumab Fluorouracil and leucovorin Fluorouracil and leucovorin+bevacizumab Fluorouracil and leucovorin+irinotecan Fluorouracil and leucovorin+ irinotecan+bevacizumab Fluorouracil and leucovorin+irinotecan +oxaliplatinFluorouracil+leucovorin+oxaliplatin Fluorouracil and leucovorin + oxaliplatin + bevacizumab Irinotecan Irinotecan + oxaliplatin Oxaliplatin Colorectal Cancer Golfinopoulos V, Salanti G, Pavlidis N, Ioannidis JP: Survival and disease-progression benefits with treatment regimens for advanced colorectal cancer: a meta-analysis. Lancet Oncol 2007, 8: 898-911.
  • 35. Advantages of MTM – Ranking of many treatments for the same condition (see later) – Comprehensive use of all available data (indirect evidence) – Comparison of interventions which haven’t been directly compared in any experiment – Improved precision for each comparison
  • 36. paroxetine sertraline citalopram fluoxetine fluvoxamine milnacipran venlafaxine reboxetine bupropion mirtazapine duloxetine escitalopram Lancet 2009 Cipriani, Fukurawa, Salanti et al Network of experimental comparisons Fluoxetine vs Milnacipran (response to treatment) Meta-analysis: 1.15 (0.72, 1.85) MTM: 0.97 (0.69, 1.32)
  • 37. Why use Bayesian statistics for meta-analysis? • Natural approach for accumulating data • Repeated updating of meta-analyses fine: posterior should always reflect latest beliefs • People naturally think as Bayesians: they have degrees of belief about the effects of treatment, which change when they see new data • Probability statements about true effects of treatment easier to understand than confidence intervals and p -values
  • 38. Why use Bayesian statistics for MTM? • Bayesian approach is easier to account for correlations induced by multi-arm trials • Estimation of predictive intervals is straightforward • Estimation of ranking probabilities is straightforward • MTM with two-arm trials only (or ignoring the correlations) Easy with frequentist meta-regression
  • 39. Fixed effect meta-analysis Trial 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 Treatment better Control better Effect estimate -1 0 1 random error common (fixed) effect μ yi i
  • 40. Random effects meta-analysis study-specific effect distribution of effects Trial 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 Treatment better Control better Effect estimate -1 0 1 random error τμ θi yi i
  • 41. Random effects meta-regression Explanatory variable, x yi = intersept + slope x Random error Τmeta-regmeta-reg i
  • 42. • We observe yi in each study (e.g. the log(OR)) • Meta-regression using the treatments as ‘covariates’ • AC, AB, BC studies, chose C as reference Meta-regression • The AC studies have (1,0), the BC studies (0,1) [basic] • AB studies have (1,-1) [functional] yi = C (Treati=A) + BC (Treati=B)
  • 43. Parametrisation of the network t-PA Angioplasty Acc t-PA Anistreplase Retaplase Streptokinase Choose basic parameters Write all other contrasts as linear functions of the basic parameters to build the design matrix LOR for death in treatments for MI
  • 44. LOR for death in treatments for MI No. studies Streptokinase t-PA Anistreplase Acc t-PA Angioplasty Reteplase 3 1 1 3 1 1 2 2 2 Use as ‘covariates’ yi= μA t-PA  μB Anistreplasei μC Accelerated t-PAi  μD Angioplastyi  μE Reteplasei -1 1 0 0 0 0 -1 0 1 0 0 0 -1 0 0 1 0 0 -1 0 0 0 1 0 -1 0 0 0 0 1 -1 1 0 0 0 -1 0 0 1 0 0 0 -1 1 0 0 0 -1 0 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 Lumley 2002, Stat Med
  • 45.  X),,,,(Y EDCBA  LOR for death in treatments for MI Matrix of all observations Vector of LogOR yi= μA t-PA  μB Anistreplasei μC Accelerated t-PAi  μD Angioplastyi  μE Reteplasei Design matrix Random effects matrix )V,X(N~Y μ ))τ(diag,(N~ 2 ∆ 0 Variance-covariance matrix (for the observed LOR)
  • 46. LOR compared to Streptokinase (RE model) - 0.11 (0.06) - 0.43 (0.20) - 0.15 (0.05) -0.00 (0.03) -0.02 (0.03) LOR (SE)Treatment t-PA Anistreplase Accelerated t-PA Angioplasty Reteplase  X),,,,(Y EDCBA  1.01)(0.80,0.90 0.96)(0.44,0.65 0.95)(0.78,0.86 1.06)(0.94,1.00 1.04)(0.92,0.98 95% CIOR
  • 47. What’s the problem with multi-arm trials? • We need to take into account the correlations between the estimates that come from the same study • A B C yi BC yi AC • The random effects (θi BC, θi AC) that refer to the same trial are correlated as well • You have to built in the correlation matrix for the observed effects, and the correlation matrix for the random effects )V,X(N~Y μ ))τ(diag,(N~ 2 ∆ 0
  • 48. Study No. arms # Data Contrast i=1 T1=2 1 y1,1, v1,1 AB i=2 T2=2 1 y2,1, v2,1 AC i=3 T3=2 1 y3,1, v3,1 BC i=4 T4=3 2 y4,1, v4,1 y4,2, v4,2 cov(y4,1, y4,2) AB AC Hypothetical example Basic parameters: AB and AC
  • 49. 1,1 1,11,1 2,1 2,12,1 3,1 3,13,1 4,1 4,14,1 4,2 4,2 4,2 1 0 0 1 1 1 1 0 0 1                                                                           AB AC y y y y y Meta-regression Study No. arms # Data Contrast i=1 T1=2 1 y1,1, v1,1 AB i=2 T2=2 1 y2,1, v2,1 AC i=3 T3=2 1 y3,1, v3,1 BC i=4 T4=3 2 y4,1, v4,1 y4,2, v4,2 cov(y4,1, y4,2) AB AC
  • 50. 1,1 1,11,1 2,1 2,12,1 3,1 3,13,1 4,1 4,14,1 4,2 4,2 4,2 1 0 0 1 1 1 1 0 0 1                                                                           AB AC y y y y y Study No. arms # Data Contrast i=1 T1=2 1 y1,1, v1,1 AB i=2 T2=2 1 y2,1, v2,1 AC i=3 T3=2 1 y3,1, v3,1 BC i=4 T4=3 2 y4,1, v4,1 y4,2, v4,2 cov(y4,1, y4,2) AB AC Take into account correlation in observations     1,11,1 2,12,1 3,13,1 4,1 4,1 4,24,1 4,2 4,1 4,2 4,2 0 0 0 00 0 0 0 00 0 0 0 0~ ,0 0 0 0 cov ,0 0 0 0 0 cov ,                                                      v v vN v y y y y v
  • 51. 1,1 1,11,1 2,1 2,12,1 3,1 3,13,1 4,1 4,14,1 4,2 4,2 4,2 1 0 0 1 1 1 1 0 0 1                                                                           AB AC y y y y y Study No. arms # Data Contrast i=1 T1=2 1 y1,1, v1,1 AB i=2 T2=2 1 y2,1, v2,1 AC i=3 T3=2 1 y3,1, v3,1 BC i=4 T4=3 2 y4,1, v4,1 y4,2, v4,2 cov(y4,1, y4,2) AB AC Take into account correlation in random effects     2 1,1 2 2,1 2 3,1 2 4,1 4,24,1 2 4,2 4,1 4,2 0 0 0 00 0 0 0 00 0 0 0 0~ ,0 0 0 0 cov ,0 0 0 0 0 cov ,                                                            AB AC BC AB AC N
  • 52. How to fit such a model? • MLwiN • SAS, R • STATA using metan
  • 53. Ranking measures from MTM • With many treatments judgments based on pairwise effect sizes are difficult to make • Example: Antidepressants
  • 54.
  • 55. Ranking measures from MTM • With many treatments judgments based on pairwise effect sizes are difficult to make • Example: Antidepressants • Example: Antiplatelet regimens for serious vascular events
  • 56. Aspirin vs Placebo Thienopyridines vs Aspirin Thienopyridines vs Placebo 0.5 1 1.5 2 0.32 0.03 <0.01 Aspirin+Dipyridamole vs Aspirin+Thienopyridines Aspirin+Dipyridamole vs Aspirin Aspirin+Dipyridamole vs Placebo Aspirin+Dipyridamole vs Thienopyridines 0 Aspirin+Thienopyridines vs Aspirin Aspirin+Thienopyridines vs Placebo Aspirin+Thienopyridines vs Thienopyridines0.23 0.05 <0.01 0.19 <0.01 <0.01 P-value Comparison Odds Ratio for serious vascular event Favors first treatment Favors second treatment Serious vascular events with antiplatelet regimens
  • 57. Probabilities instead of effect sizes • Estimate for each treatment the probability to be the best • This is straightforward within a Bayesian framework
  • 58. % probability A B C D j=1 0.25 0.50 0.25 0.00 j=2 0.50 0.75 0.75 0.00 j=3 0.75 1.00 1.00 0.25 j=4 1.00 1.00 1.00 1.00
  • 59. % probability A B C D j=1 0.25 0.50 0.25 0.00 j=2 0.25 0.25 0.50 0.00 j=3 0.25 0.25 0.25 0.25 j=4 0.25 0 0 0.75 i the treatment j the rank
  • 60. Rank of paroxetine Probability 2 4 6 8 10 12 0.00.20.40.6 Rank of sertraline 2 4 6 8 10 12 0.00.20.40.6 Rank of citalopram 2 4 6 8 10 12 0.00.20.40.6 Rank of escitalopram 2 4 6 8 10 12 0.00.20.40.6 Rank of fluoxetine Probability 2 4 6 8 10 12 0.00.20.40.6 Rank of fluvoxamine 2 4 6 8 10 12 0.00.20.40.6 Rank of milnacipran 2 4 6 8 10 12 0.00.20.40.6 Rank of venlafaxine 2 4 6 8 10 12 0.00.20.40.6 Rank of reboxetine Probability 2 4 6 8 10 12 0.00.20.40.6 Rank of bupropion 2 4 6 8 10 12 0.00.20.40.6 Rank of mirtazapine 2 4 6 8 10 12 0.00.20.40.6 Rank of duloxetine 2 4 6 8 10 12 0.00.20.40.6 Ranking for efficacy (solid line) and acceptability (dotted line). Ranking: probability to be the best treatment, to be the second best, the third best and so on, among the 12 comparisons).
  • 61. % probability A B C D j=1 0.25 0.50 0.25 0.00 j=2 0.50 0.75 0.75 0.00 j=3 0.75 1.00 1.00 0.25 j=4 1.00 1.00 1.00 1.00 The areas under the cumulative curves for the four treatments of the example above are A=0.5 B=0.75 C=0.67 D=0.08 i the treatment j the rank Rank of A CumulativeProbability 1.0 1.5 2.0 2.5 3.0 3.5 4.0 0.00.20.40.60.81.0 Rank of B 1.0 1.5 2.0 2.5 3.0 3.5 4.0 0.00.20.40.60.81.0 Rank of C CumulativeProbability 1.0 1.5 2.0 2.5 3.0 3.5 4.0 0.00.20.40.60.81.0 Rank of D 1.0 1.5 2.0 2.5 3.0 3.5 4.0 0.00.20.40.60.81.0
  • 62. Preliminary results for ranking 12 antidepressants Rank of paroxetine CumulativeProbability 2 4 6 8 10 12 Rank of sertraline 2 4 6 8 10 12 Rank of reboxetine CumulativeProbability 2 4 6 8 10 12 020406080100 Rank of mirtazapine 2 4 6 8 10 12 35% 77% 1% 92% 020406080100 020406080100020406080100 A comprehensive ranking measure Compared to an imaginary antidepressant which is ‘always the best’, mirtazapine reaches up to 92% of its potential!
  • 63.
  • 64. • What is inconsistency? • How it manifests itself? Inconsistency
  • 65. Inconsistency Direct t-PA vs Angioplasty=  0.41 (0.36) 0.02 (0.03) - 0.48 (0.43) Calculate a difference between direct and indirect estimates t-PA Angioplasty Streptokinase LOR (SE) for MI Indirect t-PA vs Angioplasty =  0.46 (0.18) Inconsistency in the loop = 0.05
  • 66. Inconsistency - Heterogeneity • Heterogeneity: ‘excessive’ discrepancy among study-specific effects • Inconsistency: it is the excessive discrepancy among source-specific effects (direct and indirect)
  • 67. 14 15 16 17 AC=15.5 7 8 9 10 BC=8.2 1 2 3 4 AB=2.3
  • 68. • In 3 cases out of 44 there was an important discrepancy between direct/indirect effect. • Direction of the discrepancy is inconsistent Glenny et al HTA 2005 Inconsistency Empirical Evidence
  • 69. Placebo Toothpaste Gel Direct SMD(TvsG) = 0.04 Indirect SMD(TvsG) = – 0.15 IF= 0.11 P-Gel P-Toothpaste I cannot learn about Toothpaste versus Gel through Placebo! Compare Fluoride treatments in preventing dental caries What can cause inconsistency? Inappropriate common comparator
  • 70. Screening for lung cancer Baker & Kramer, BMC Meth 2002 Chest X-ray Standard Spiral CT A new therapy (possibly unreported in the trials) decreases the mortality but in different rates for the three screening methods Percent receiving new therapy Mortality 30 70 Trial 1: Chest X-ray= Standard Trial 2: Spiral-CT= Standard New Trial: Spiral-CT < Chest X-ray 100 What can cause inconsistency? Confounding by trial characteristics
  • 71. age Effectiveness Alfacalcidol +Ca Calcitriol + Ca Ca What can cause inconsistency? Confounding by trial characteristics Vitamin D for Osteoporosis-related fractures, Richy et al Calcif Tissue 2005, 76;276 Vitamin D +Ca Different characteristics across comparisons may cause inconsistency
  • 72. • There is not confounding by trial characteristics that are related to both the comparison being made and the magnitude of treatment difference • The trials in two different comparisons are exchangeable (other than interventions being compared) • Equivalent to the assumption ‘the unobserved treatment is missing at random’ – Is this plausible? – Selection of the comparator is not often random! Assumptions of MTM
  • 73. • Check the distribution of important characteristics per treatment comparison – Usually unobserved…. – Time (of randomization, of recruitment) might be associated with changes to the background risk that may violate the assumptions of MTM • Get a taste by looking for inconsistency in closed loops Inconsistency Detecting
  • 74. No. studies T G R V P Fup Baseline Year Water F (yes/no) 69 2.6 11.8 1968 0.2 13 2.3 3.8 1973 0.2 30 2.4 5.9 1973 0.1 3 2.3 2.7 1983 0 3 2.7 NA 1968 0.66 6 2.8 14.7 1969 0 1 2 0.9 1978 0 1 1 NA 1977 0 1 3 7.4 1991 NA 4 2.5 7.6 1981 0.33 Compare the characteristics! Salanti G, Marinho V, Higgins JP: A case study of multiple-treatments meta-analysis demonstrates that covariates should be considered. J Clin Epidemiol 2009, 62: 857-864.
  • 75. • Check the distribution of important characteristics per treatment comparison – Usually unobserved…. – Time (of randomization, of recruitment) might be associated with changes to the background risk that may violate the assumptions of MTM • Get a taste by looking for inconsistency in closed loops • Fit a model that relaxes consistency – Add an extra ‘random effect’ per loop (Lu & Ades JASA 2005) Inconsistency Detecting
  • 77. -1.0 0.0 0.5 1.0 1.5 2.0 Closed loops NGV NGR NRV PDG PDV PDR DGV DGR DRV PGV PGR PRV GRV AGRV PDGV PDGR PDRV DGRV PGRV PDGRV Evaluation of concordance within closed loops Estimates with 95% confidence intervals R routine in http://www.dhe.med.uoi.gr/software.htm Salanti G, Marinho V, Higgins JP: A case study of multiple-treatments meta-analysis demonstrates that covariates should be considered. J Clin Epidemiol 2009, 62: 857-864.
  • 78. • Check the distribution of important characteristics per treatment comparison – Usually unobserved…. – Time (of randomization, of recruitment) might be associated with changes to the background risk that may violate the assumptions of MTM • Get a taste by looking for inconsistency in closed loops • Fit a model that relaxes consistency – Add an extra ‘random effect’ per loop (Lu & Ades JASA 2005) Inconsistency Detecting
  • 79. Inconsistency - Heterogeneity RCTs Meta-analysis of RCTs With homogeneity2 interventions With consistencyMultiple meta-analyses of RCTsbest intervention
  • 80. References 1. Baker SG, Kramer BS: The transitive fallacy for randomized trials: if A bests B and B bests C in separate trials, is A better than C? BMC Med Res Methodol 2002, 2: 13. 2. Caldwell DM, Ades AE, Higgins JP: Simultaneous comparison of multiple treatments: combining direct and indirect evidence. BMJ 2005, 331: 897-900. 3. Cipriani A, Furukawa TA, Salanti G, Geddes JR, Higgins JP, Churchill R et al.: Comparative efficacy and acceptability of 12 new-generation antidepressants: a multiple-treatments meta-analysis. Lancet 2009, 373: 746-758. 4. Cooper NJ, Sutton AJ, Lu G, Khunti K: Mixed comparison of stroke prevention treatments in individuals with nonrheumatic atrial fibrillation. Arch Intern Med 2006, 166: 1269-1275. 5. Golfinopoulos V, Salanti G, Pavlidis N, Ioannidis JP: Survival and disease-progression benefits with treatment regimens for advanced colorectal cancer: a meta-analysis. Lancet Oncol 2007, 8: 898-911. 6. Heres S, Davis J, Maino K, Jetzinger E, Kissling W, Leucht S: Why olanzapine beats risperidone, risperidone beats quetiapine, and quetiapine beats olanzapine: an exploratory analysis of head-to-head comparison studies of second- generation antipsychotics. Am J Psychiatry 2006, 163: 185-194. 7. Jansen JP, Crawford B, Bergman G, Stam W: Bayesian Meta-Analysis of Multiple Treatment Comparisons: An Introduction to Mixed Treatment Comparisons. Value Health 2008. 8. Lu G, Ades AE: Assessing Evidence Inconsistency in Mixed Treatment Comparisons. Journal of American Statistical Association 2006, 101: 447-459. 9. Lu G, Ades AE: Combination of direct and indirect evidence in mixed treatment comparisons. Stat Med 2004, 23: 3105- 3124. 10. Salanti G, Higgins JP, Ades AE, Ioannidis JP: Evaluation of networks of randomized trials. Stat Methods Med Res 2008, 17: 279-301. 11. Salanti G, Marinho V, Higgins JP: A case study of multiple-treatments meta-analysis demonstrates that covariates should be considered. J Clin Epidemiol 2009, 62: 857-864. 12. Song F, Harvey I, Lilford R: Adjusted indirect comparison may be less biased than direct comparison for evaluating new pharmaceutical interventions. J Clin Epidemiol 2008, 61: 455-463. 13. Sutton A, Ades AE, Cooper N, Abrams K: Use of indirect and mixed treatment comparisons for technology assessment. Pharmacoeconomics 2008, 26: 753-767. 14. Welton NJ, Cooper NJ, Ades AE, Lu G, Sutton AJ: Mixed treatment comparison with multiple outcomes reported inconsistently across trials: Evaluation of antivirals for treatment of influenza A and B. Stat Med 2008, 29: 5620-5639.