Diclofenac evaluated in a human experimental model of central pain

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SummaryThe putative central analgesic activity of diclofenac was investigated in a human experimental pain model using intraneural electrical stimulation in the median nerve. Since pain is induced proximal to the peripheral nociceptors, the model can be used to test central analgesic properties of i.a. pharmacological interventions performed during series of repeated stimulations. A single intravenous dose of 50 mg diclofenac or saline was administered during an ongoing series of painful intraneural stimulations in a double-blind cross-over study in 10 healthy volunteers. Neither diclofenac nor saline caused any significant change in the level of pain experienced during stimulation. Thus, no central analgesic effect of diclofenac could be demonstrated in this model. The stability of individual visual analogue scale (VAS) scores throughout the experimental sessions, also after administration of the potent peripheral analgesic agent diclofenac, underlines the validity of intraneural stimulation as a central pain model in humans.

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