Table 2

Sensitivity analyses of efficacy of osmotic and stimulant laxatives in chronic idiopathic constipation

Number of studiesNumber of subjectsRR of failure to respond to therapy95% CII2 valueNumber needed to treat95% CI
All studies714110.520.46 to 0.6042%32 to 4
Risk of bias of trials
 Low512600.540.46 to 0.6252%32 to 4
 High21510.410.26 to 0.65N/A32 to 6
Definition of CIC
 Rome criteria-defined511570.520.45 to 0.6150%2.52 to 3
 Other definition22540.510.27 to 0.96N/A4.53 to 9
Duration of therapy
 ≤ 4 weeks49890.540.45 to 0.6651%32.5 to 4
 > 4 weeks34220.460.33 to 0.6549%2.52 to 3
Definition of response to therapy
 ≥3 stools per week45730.520.41 to 0.6536%32 to 4
 ≥3 CSBMs per week27350.540.42 to 0.69NA32 to 3.5
  • N/A, not applicable (too few studies to assess heterogeneity); CIC, chronic idiopathic constipation; CSBM, complete spontaneous bowel movement.