5 years ago

Relative risk of and determinants for adverse events of methotrexate prescribed at a low dose: a systematic review and meta-analysis of randomized placebo-controlled trials

L. Fardet, C. Mazaud
Low-dose (i.e. ≤ 30 mg per week) methotrexate is widely prescribed by dermatologists. However, there is limited evidence-based information regarding the relative risk of and determinants for adverse events associated with this treatment. The aims of this review were to assess the relative risk of and the determinants for adverse events associated with low-dose methotrexate exposure. A systematic review was undertaken using the MEDLINE, Embase and CENTRAL databases. Randomized controlled trials comparing low-dose methotrexate with placebo were eligible. Random effect meta-analyses were conducted to assess the risk ratios (RRs) of adverse events associated with methotrexate exposure. Subgroup analyses and random effect meta-regressions were performed to examine the determinants of adverse events. In total, 68 trials (6938 participants) were included. Compared with placebo, low-dose methotrexate slightly increased the risk of adverse events (mean number per individual: 1·78 ± 2·00 in the methotrexate group, 1·53 ± 1·89 in the placebo group; P < 0·001), including nausea/vomiting, elevated transaminase levels, mucosal ulcerations, leucopenia, thrombopenia and infectious events, but not the risk of serious adverse events or death. Low-dose methotrexate also increased the number of withdrawals from studies because of adverse events [RR 1·32 (1·13–1·53)]. The concomitant prescription of folic/folinic acid was associated with a significant lower risk of any adverse events, and methotrexate prescribed orally was associated with a higher risk of abdominal pain than when prescribed subcutaneously or by intramuscular injection. On the other hand, the risk of adverse events did not increase with the weekly dose or with duration of exposure. Similar studies comparing methotrexate with other systemic/biological treatments are needed.

Publisher URL: http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/resolve/doi

DOI: 10.1111/bjd.15377

You might also like
Discover & Discuss Important Research

Keeping up-to-date with research can feel impossible, with papers being published faster than you'll ever be able to read them. That's where Researcher comes in: we're simplifying discovery and making important discussions happen. With over 19,000 sources, including peer-reviewed journals, preprints, blogs, universities, podcasts and Live events across 10 research areas, you'll never miss what's important to you. It's like social media, but better. Oh, and we should mention - it's free.

  • Download from Google Play
  • Download from App Store
  • Download from AppInChina

Researcher displays publicly available abstracts and doesn’t host any full article content. If the content is open access, we will direct clicks from the abstracts to the publisher website and display the PDF copy on our platform. Clicks to view the full text will be directed to the publisher website, where only users with subscriptions or access through their institution are able to view the full article.