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Comment & Response
October 2018

Errors in Meta-analysis of Trial Comparing Effectiveness and Safety of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy With Pharmacotherapy for Childhood Anxiety Disorders

Author Affiliations
  • 1Division of Health Care Policy and Research, Department of Health Sciences Research, Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minnesota
  • 2Mayo Clinic Evidence-Based Practice Center, Rochester, Minnesota
JAMA Pediatr. 2018;172(10):983-984. doi:10.1001/jamapediatrics.2018.2951

To the Editor On behalf of my coauthors, I write to report errors in our article, “Comparative Effectiveness and Safety of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy and Pharmacotherapy for Childhood Anxiety Disorders: A Systematic Review and Meta-analysis,”1 that was published online August 31, 2017, and in the November 2017 issue of JAMA Pediatrics. This systematic review and meta-analysis included 115 studies comprising 7719 patients and concluded that the evidence supported the effectiveness of cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) and pharmacotherapy for the management of childhood anxiety symptoms. The errors relate to 1 study (the Child/Adolescent Anxiety Multimodal Study [references 12-18 in our article1]), which had 4 arms. Two of the study arms (ie, CBT and CBT with selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor [SSRI]) in that trial were reversed in our analysis; the CBT arm was erroneously coded as CBT+SSRI and the CBT+SSRI arm was coded as CBT. This issue was brought to our attention by a representative of the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, which funded the study.

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