Significant pain reduction for post-shingles patients

tes certain receptors expressed by nerve fibers that specialize in the detection of painful stimuli. It is believed that the topical application of high doses of capsaicin can cause these capsaicin-sensitive nerve fibers to stop functioning. To the extent that these capsaicin-sensitive nerve fibers are involved in pain transmission, topically applied capsaicin could bring about a reduction in pain. For this reason, low-concentration capsaicin creams have been used with varying success for the treatment of postherpetic neuralgia and other pains. However, usage of these creams has been limited by the pain and inconvenience caused by the requirement for prolonged application several times a day, for weeks. The study reported on today used high-concentration capsaicin patches in a single one-hour application and provided pain reduction for four weeks.

Single Application Treatment Delivers Pain Relief without Safety Problems
The Phase II study for what NeurogesX calls NGX-4010 was a double-blind, randomized controlled, multi-center study evaluating the tolerability, safety, and efficacy of high-concentration capsaicin patches in the treatment of postherpetic neuralgia. Forty-four patients at nine centers in the United States were given a single treatment and then followed for four weeks.

The treatment procedure consisted of a single application of a topical non-prescription anesthetic for one hour, followed by a one-hour patch application on the most painful area, up to a maximum of 1000 cm2. The control group received a low-concentration capsaicin patch.

Patients recorded their pain intensity twice daily on an 11-point numerical scale. The primary efficacy endpoint was the change from baseline in morning/evening average pain (days 8 - 28).

In todays Late Breaking Science session, Dr. Backonja discussed the study results in an oral presentation.

Forty-two percent of patients in the active group experienced a pain dec

Contact: Mike Jackman
Jackman Communications

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