The Oxford League Table of Analgesic Efficacy*
Numbers needed to treat are calculated for the proportion of patients with at least 50% pain relief over 4-6 hours compared with placebo in randomised, double-blind, single-dose studies in patients with moderate to severe pain. Drugs were oral, unless specified, and doses are milligrams.
Analgesic
# patients in comparison
% with at least
50% pain relief
NNT**
Lower confidence interval
Higher confidence interval
Etoricoxib 180/240 248 77 1.5 1.3 1.7
Etoricoxib 100/120 500 70 1.6 1.5 1.8
Valdecoxib 40 473 73 1.6 1.4 1.8
Dipyrone 1000 113 79 1.6 1.3 2.2
Ibuprofen 600/800 165 86 1.7 1.4 2.3
Valdecoxib 20 204 68 1.7 1.4 2.0
Ketorolac 20 69 57 1.8 1.4 2.5
Ketorolac 60 (intramuscular) 116 56 1.8 1.5 2.3
Diclofenac 100 545 69 1.8 1.6 2.1
Piroxicam 40 30 80 1.9 1.2 4.3
Celecoxib 400 298 52 2.1 1.8 2.5
Paracetamol 1000 + Codeine 60 197 57 2.2 1.7 2.9
Oxycodone IR 5 + Paracetamol 500 150 60 2.2 1.7 3.2
Bromfenac 25 370 51 2.2 1.9 2.6
Rofecoxib 50 675 54 2.3 2.0 2.6
Oxycodone IR 15 60 73 2.3 1.5 4.9
Aspirin 1200 279 61 2.4 1.9 3.2
Bromfenac 50 247 53 2.4 2.0 3.3
Dipyrone 500 288 73 2.4 1.9 3.2
Ibuprofen 400 5456 55 2.5 2.4 2.7
Bromfenac 100 95 62 2.6 1.8 4.9
Oxycodone IR 10 + Paracetamol 650 315 66 2.6 2.0 3.5
Diclofenac 25 502 53 2.6 2.2 3.3
Ketorolac 10 790 50 2.6 2.3 3.1
Paracetamol 650 + tramadol 75 679 43 2.6 2.3 3.0
Oxycodone IR 10+Paracetamol 1000 83 67 2.7 1.7 5.6
Naproxen 400/440 197 51 2.7 2.1 4.0
Piroxicam 20 280 63 2.7 2.1 3.8
Lumiracoxib 400 370 48 2.7 2.2 3.5
Naproxen 500/550 784 52 2.7 2.3 3.3
Diclofenac 50 1296 57 2.7 2.4 3.1
Ibuprofen 200 3248 48 2.7 2.5 2.9
Dextropropoxyphene 130 50 40 2.8 1.8 6.5
Paracetamol 650 + tramadol 112 201 60 2.8 2.1 4.4
Bromfenac 10 223 39 2.9 2.3 4.0
Pethidine 100 (intramuscular) 364 54 2.9 2.3 3.9
Tramadol 150 561 48 2.9 2.4 3.6
Morphine 10 (intramuscular) 946 50 2.9 2.6 3.6
Naproxen 200/220 202 45 3.4 2.4 5.8
Ketorolac 30 (intramuscular) 359 53 3.4 2.5 4.9
Paracetamol 500 561 61 3.5 2.2 13.3
Celecoxib 200 805 40 3.5 2.9 4.4
Paracetamol 1500 138 65 3.7 2.3 9.5
Ibuprofen 100 495 36 3.7 2.9 4.9
Oxycodone IR 5 + Paracetamol 1000 78 55 3.8 2.1 20.0
Paracetamol 1000 2759 46 3.8 3.4 4.4
Paracetamol 600/650 + Codeine 60 1123 42 4.2 3.4 5.3
Paracetamol 650 + Dextropropoxyphene (65 mg hydrochloride or 100 mg napsylate) 963 38 4.4 3.5 5.6
Aspirin 600/650 5061 38 4.4 4.0 4.9
Paracetamol 600/650 1886 38 4.6 3.9 5.5
Ibuprofen 50 316 32 4.7 3.3 8.0
Tramadol 100 882 30 4.8 3.8 6.1
Tramadol 75 563 32 5.3 3.9 8.2
Aspirin 650 + Codeine 60 598 25 5.3 4.1 7.4
Oxycodone IR 5 + Paracetamol 325 149 24 5.5 3.4 14.0
Ketorolac 10 (intramuscular) 142 48 5.7 3.0 53.0
Paracetamol 300 + Codeine 30 379 26 5.7 4.0 9.8
Bromfenac 5 138 20 7.1 3.9 28.0
Tramadol 50 770 19 8.3 6.0 13.0
Codeine 60 1305 15 16.7 11.0 48.0
           
Placebo >10,000 18 N/A N/A N/A

* Adapted from the Bandolier site: http://www.medicine.ox.ac.uk/bandolier/booth/painpag/Acutrev/Analgesics/Leagtab.html
** NNT = Number Needed to Treat. See explanation.