HNC: pregabalin reduces RT-associated neuropathic pain in Chinese study

  • Jiang J & al.
  • J Clin Oncol
  • 20 Nov 2018

  • curated by Brian Richardson, PhD
  • Univadis Clinical Summaries
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Takeaway

  • Pregabalin alleviates neuropathic pain and improves QoL in patients with head and neck cancer (HNC) undergoing radiation therapy (RT), according to data from a randomized controlled trial (RCT).

Why this matters

  • Neuropathic pain is a common and unavoidable adverse effect of RT.

Key results

  • Pregabalin yielded a greater reduction in pain intensity vs placebo at week 16 (2.44 vs 1.58; P=.003).
  • Pregabalin yielded greater reductions in the physiology and psychology domains of the WHO Quality of Life-BREF vs placebo (P=.004 and P=.01, respectively).
  • Pregabalin and placebo were associated with similar rates of adverse events (54.7% vs 45.3%; P=.29).

Study design

  • 128 patients with HNC treated with RT and a mean pain intensity score ≥4 on an 11-point scale were randomly assigned to receive pregabalin or placebo for 16 weeks.
  • Funding: National Natural Science Foundation of China; National Key R&D Program of China; Major Program of Collaborative Innovation Specialized in Livehood Science Topics; Science and Technology Planning Project of Guangdong Province; Tip-top Scientific and Technical Innovative Youth Talents of Guangdong; Science and Technology Planning Project of Guangzhou; Sun Yat-Sen University.

Limitations

  • Short follow-up.

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