Osteoarthritis: RCT finds duloxetine relieves pain

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  • In a Chinese randomized controlled trial (RCT) to evaluate pain relief in patients with osteoarthritis (OA), the depression medication duloxetine (Cymbalta), a serotonin-norepinephrine reuptake inhibitor, provided better pain relief than placebo.

Why this matters

  • More treatment options for OA pain are needed.

Study design

  • A 13-wk randomized, placebo-controlled, blinded, multicenter trial to evaluate safety and effectiveness of duloxetine 60 mg for chronic OA pain.
  • Knee or hip OA was diagnosed with American College of Rheumatology clinical and radiographic criteria.
  • Primary outcome was pain severity by Brief Pain Inventory 24-h Average Pain score.
  • At baseline, th...