Send to

Choose Destination
Health Qual Life Outcomes. 2010 Nov 24;8:138. doi: 10.1186/1477-7525-8-138.

Defining a minimal clinically important difference for endometriosis-associated pelvic pain measured on a visual analog scale: analyses of two placebo-controlled, randomized trials.

Author information

Global Clinical Statistics, Bayer Schering Pharma AG, 13342 Berlin, Germany.



When comparing active treatments, a non-inferiority (or one-sided equivalence) study design is often used. This design requires the definition of a non-inferiority margin, the threshold value of clinical relevance. In recent studies, a non-inferiority margin of 15 mm has been used for the change in endometriosis-associated pelvic pain (EAPP) on a visual analog scale (VAS). However, this value was derived from other chronic painful conditions and its validation in EAPP was lacking.


Data were analyzed from two placebo-controlled studies of active treatments in endometriosis, including 281 patients with laparoscopically-confirmed endometriosis and moderate-to-severe EAPP. Patients recorded EAPP on a VAS at baseline and the end of treatment. Patients also assessed their satisfaction with treatment on a modified Clinical Global Impression scale. Changes in VAS score were compared with patients' self-assessments to derive an empirically validated non-inferiority margin. This anchor-based value was compared to a non-inferiority margin derived using the conventional half standard deviation rule for minimal clinically important difference (MCID) in patient-reported outcomes.


Anchor-based and distribution-based MCIDs were-7.8 mm and-8.6 mm, respectively.


An empirically validated non-inferiority margin of 10 mm for EAPP measured on a VAS is appropriate to compare treatments in endometriosis.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for BioMed Central Icon for PubMed Central
Loading ...
Support Center