Cancer: fentanyl patch retains analgesic effect with low BMI

  • Moryl N & al.
  • Cancer Med
  • 30 Sep 2019

  • International Clinical Digest
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Takeaway

  • Low BMI is not associated with poorer pain relief from the transdermal fentanyl (TDF) patch for cancer pain, regardless of dose.

Why this matters

  • Prior studies of the effectiveness of TDF in patients with low BMI yielded conflicting results.

Study design

  • This prospective clinical effectiveness study evaluated potential associations among TDF, BMI, and clinical pain outcomes in patients with cancer pain (n=240; median age, 60 years).
  • Funding: National Institute on Drug Abuse; others.

Key results

  • Patients with BMI 2 reported the most pain relief (67%) and lowest least pain (2.7).
  • Significant covariate associated with high fentanyl dose and greater least pain was age
  • BMI of 2 was significantly associated with greater pain relief irrespective of TDF dose (P=.038).
    • The association lost significance after controlling for age, cancer diagnoses, and pain etiology (P=.073).

Limitations

  • Findings may not be generalisable.

Coauthored with Chitra Ravi, MPharm