Table 4

Capacity of the changes in clinical and ultrasonographic scoring systems to discriminate groups of patients with rheumatoid arthritis based on their condition after 4 months of tumour necrosis factor (TNF) blocker therapy

Doctor's global assessment*
Scoring systemYesNoStandardised mean difference
Joint count§
20 Clinical−3.1 ± 3.2−2.5 ± 3.0−0.18 (−0.69 to 0.32)
20 US B mode−3.5 ± 4.4−1.4 ± 4.2−0.47 (−0.99 to 0.05)
20 US power Doppler−3.2 ± 3.6−2.0 ± 3.9−0.33 (−0.84 to 0.19)
28 Clinical−6.4 ± 4.4−3.3 ± 4.4−0.69 (−1.23 to −0.16)
28 US B mode−5.4 ± 6.0−1.5 ± 5.1−0.71 (−1.24 to −0.18)
28 US power Doppler−3.5 ± 4.1−2.2 ± 5.1−0.29 (−0.81 to 0.22)
38 Clinical−6.9 ± 5.0−4.1 ± 5.1−0.55 (−1.08 to −0.02)
38 US B mode−6.5 ± 7.2−2.2 ± 7.0−0.60 (−1.14 to −0.06)
38 US power Doppler−4.9 ± 5.1−3.3 ± 6.0−0.30 (−0.82 to 0.23)
Clinical DAS28 ESR−2.2 ± 1.3−1.2 ± 1.0−0.86 (−1.40 to −0.31)
US B mode DAS28 ESR−2.0 ± 1.3−0.9 ± 0.9−0.92 (−1.46 to −0.37)
US power Doppler DAS28 ESR−2.0 ± 1.3−9.0 ± 1.0−0.85 (−1.38 to −0.31)
Joint score§
20 Clinical−8.8 ± 9.3−6.0 ± 6.2−0.35 (−0.86 to 0.16)
20 US B mode−9.6 ± 9.3−3.9 ± 9.0−0.62 (−1.15 to −0.09)
20 US power Doppler−5.9 ± 6.6−4.5 ± 7.6−0.20 (−0.72 to 0.31)
28 Clinical−15.6 ± 13.5−8.8 ± 8.6−0.57 (−1.10 to −0.04)
28 US B mode−13.4 ± 11.5−5.7 ± 12.1−0.66 (−1.18 to −0.13)
28 US power Doppler−7.2 ± 6.8−5.1 ± 8.5−0.29 (−0.81 to 0.23)
38 Clinical−17.9 ± 16.6−10.6 ± 9.7−0.51 (−1.04 to 0.01)
38 US B mode−16.7 ± 14.2−6.9 ± 14.5−0.68 (−1.22 to −0.14)
38 US power Doppler−9.5 ± 8.7−7.0 ± 10.1−0.27 (−0.80 to 0.26)
  • Condition of the patient at the end of the study categorised by an improvement of at least 50% in the doctor's overall assessment (yes (n=36), no (n=27), missing data (n=5).

  • * Values given are mean ± SD. The SD of the standardised response mean was estimated using the bootstrap technique.

  • Doctor's global: improvement in the doctor's global assessment (0–100 visual analogue scale) of at least 50% during the study.

  • Values given are standardised mean difference (95% CI).

  • § See Patients and methods section for the definition of count vs score and for the description of the evaluated joints.

  • DAS28, 28-joint Disease Activity Score; ESR, erythrocyte sedimentation rate; US, ultrasound.