A meta-analysis of randomized placebo control trials in Fontaine stages III and IV peripheral occlusive arterial disease

Int Angiol. 1994 Jun;13(2):133-42.


In patients with Fontaine Stage III and IV POAD unsuitable for arterial reconstruction, Iloprost, a prostacyclin analogue, has been shown in six RCTs to have a significant (p < 0.05) beneficial effect with regards to the probability of being alive with both legs at six months follow-up. Iloprost has significant (p < 0.05) beneficial effects over placebo on ulcer healing and pain relief, but these were relatively soft endpoints to study when side effects may have unblinded many observers and patients. Further studies are indicated to investigate the possible benefit of repeated courses of treatment with Iloprost in patients with non-reconstructable Fontaine Stage III and IV POAD as well as studies looking at patients who may be suitable only for relatively high risk reconstructions. Meta-analysis of all other RCTs of pharmacotherapeutic agents in patients with Fontaine Stage III and IV POAD showed no significant benefit over placebo for any of the endpoints reported.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Meta-Analysis
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Alprostadil / therapeutic use
  • Amputation, Surgical
  • Ancrod / therapeutic use
  • Arterial Occlusive Diseases / drug therapy*
  • Arterial Occlusive Diseases / pathology
  • Epoprostenol / therapeutic use
  • Humans
  • Iloprost / therapeutic use*
  • Nafronyl / therapeutic use
  • Peripheral Vascular Diseases / drug therapy*
  • Peripheral Vascular Diseases / pathology
  • Randomized Controlled Trials as Topic
  • Survival Analysis


  • Nafronyl
  • Epoprostenol
  • Ancrod
  • Alprostadil
  • Iloprost