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Letters
December 1, 2004

Adolescents With Depression

Author Affiliations
 

Letters Section Editor: Robert M. Golub, MD, Senior Editor.

JAMA. 2004;292(21):2577-2579. doi:10.1001/jama.292.21.2578-a

To the Editor: In interpreting the TADS results,1 the central issue is the benefit-to-risk ratio, which can be determined by considering the number needed to treat (NNT), the number needed to harm (NNH), and the number needed to prevent.2 In this study, a categorical positive response was achieved in 71.0% of participants treated with fluoxetine in combination with CBT; in 60.6% with fluoxetine alone; in 43.2% with CBT alone; and in 34.8% with placebo. Based on these outcomes, the NNT is 3.9 for fluoxetine alone compared with placebo and 3.7 for drug vs no drug. I believe that these represent low NNTs (high benefit) that are clinically meaningful.

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