The OA Trial Bank initiates meta-analyses of effect of treatment on predefined subgroups of osteoarthritis (OA) patients from existing studies, using Individual Patient Data (IPD). Based on the small to moderate effectiveness of the wide range of symptomatic treatments in OA, and the heterogeneity of OA patients, treatment guidelines for OA have stressed the need for research on clinical predictors of response to different treatments.

Identifying treatment responsive subgroups is not simple and it is essential to use the correct methodology in order to avoid that some patients are erroneously deprived of certain treatments, or are erroneously assumed to have an (better) effect from such treatment.

A meta‐analysis for quantifying interaction effects using Individual Patient Data (IPD) is considered to be the gold standard for subgroup analysis with respect to effect of treatment. This method requires re‐analysis of individual patient data, made available by the authors of the separate trials. These IPD can additionally be used to identify mediators of the effects of treatments and to identify minimum clinically important differences of outcomes in osteoarthritis research. The initiative to collect IPD in osteoarthritis research is commenced by the OA Trial Bank.

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