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Meta-Analysis
. 2007 Oct;194(2):197-209.
doi: 10.1007/s00213-007-0840-x. Epub 2007 Jun 16.

Efficacy and Safety of Atomoxetine for Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder in Children and Adolescents-Meta-Analysis and Meta-Regression Analysis

Affiliations
Meta-Analysis

Efficacy and Safety of Atomoxetine for Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder in Children and Adolescents-Meta-Analysis and Meta-Regression Analysis

Jackie Y W Cheng et al. Psychopharmacology (Berl). .

Abstract

Objectives: The objective of this study was to evaluate the efficacy and safety of atomoxetine in children and adolescents.

Materials and methods: We searched for studies published between 1985 and 2006 through Medline, PubMed, PsychInfo and Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials (CENTRAL 2006 Issue 3) using keywords related to atomoxetine and attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and scanned though reference lists. We included nine randomized placebo-controlled trials (atomoxetine:placebo = 1,150:678).

Results: Atomoxetine was superior (p < 0.01) to placebo in reducing ADHD symptoms across different scales (Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder Rating Scale-IV, Conners' Parent and Teacher Rating Scales-Revised:Short Form, Clinical Global Impression-Severity) rated by different raters (parent, teacher, clinician). The number-needed-to-treat (NNTs) for treatment response and relapse prevention were 3.43 (95% CI, 2.79-4.45) and 10.30 (95% CI, 5.89-40.62), respectively. High baseline ADHD symptoms (p = 0.02) was associated with greater reduction in ADHD symptoms, whereas male gender (p = 0.02), comorbid oppositional defiant disorder (ODD) status (p = 0.01) and ADHD hyperactive/impulsive subtype (p = 0.01) were associated with smaller reductions. The commonest adverse events were gastrointestinal [appetite decrease, number-needed-to-harm (NNH) = 8.81; abdominal pain, NNH = 22.48; vomiting, NNH = 29.96; dyspepsia, NNH = 49.38] and sleep related (somnolence, NNH = 19.41). Young age (p = 0.03) and high baseline hyperactive/impulsive symptoms (p < 0.01) were associated with more adverse events, whereas ADHD inattentive subtype (p = 0.04) was associated with less adverse events. Quality of life using Child Health Questionnaire (CHQ) improved (p < 0.01) with atomoxetine treatment. Both ADHD and ODD symptoms (p < 0.01) were reduced in comorbid ADHD+ODD, and ODD status was not associated with more adverse events. Efficacy and side effects were not altered by comorbid general anxiety disorder or major depression.

Conclusions: Atomoxetine is efficacious in reducing ADHD symptoms. It may have a role in treating comorbid ODD or depression, and probably in comorbid anxiety.

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