A meta-analysis comparing trials of antimuscarinic medications funded by industry or not


Paul K. Tulikangas, University of Connecticut (Hartford Hospital), 85 Seymour Street, Suite 705, Hartford, CT 06106, USA. e-mail: Ptulika@harthosp.org



To determine if there is a significant difference in outcomes of clinical trials funded by industry or not of antimuscarinic medications used to treat overactive bladder (OAB) symptoms and detrusor overactivity (DOA).


A Medline search was conducted from January 1966 to June 2003 to identify human clinical trials of oxybutynin and tolterodine published in English. Randomized controlled trials on subjects aged ≥ 16 years who were being treated with oxybutynin or tolterodine for OAB symptoms or DOA; 24 studies were identified. The endpoints assessed were OAB symptoms or changes in uninhibited detrusor contractions on cystometrography. The outcome variables were dichotomized as ‘improvement’ or ‘no improvement’. Odds ratios and 95% confidence intervals were calculated for each study based on data derived or extracted from tables and figures.


Meta-analysis showed no significant difference in the outcomes trails funded by industry or not. Trials were then reviewed to determine their adherence to the Consolidated Standards of Reporting Trials (CONSORT) guidelines for randomized trials.


Clinical trials are important for clinicians when selecting medical therapies. In this analysis we found no difference in outcomes when comparing studies funded by industry or not for tolterodine and oxybutynin. The quality of all trials would be improved by close adherence to the CONSORT guidelines for randomized clinical trials.