Efficacy and Safety of Once-Daily Controlled-Release Pregabalin for the Treatment of Patients With Postherpetic Neuralgia: A Double-Blind, Enriched Enrollment Randomized Withdrawal, Placebo-Controlled Trial

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Abstract

Objectives:

To assess efficacy and safety of once-daily controlled-release (CR) formulation of pregabalin in patients with postherpetic neuralgia.

Methods:

An enriched enrollment, randomized withdrawal trial, with 6-week single-blind pregabalin treatment phase and 13-week double-blind phase, where patients with ≥50% decrease in mean pain score at single-blind end point from baseline were randomized (1:1) to pregabalin CR (82.5 to 660 mg/d) or placebo. Primary efficacy outcome was time to loss of therapeutic response (LTR) (<30% decrease in weekly mean pain score from single-blind baseline or discontinuation due to adverse event or lack of efficacy). Secondary efficacy outcomes included change in weekly mean pain score (1-wk recall period) at double-blind end point.

Results:

In total, 801 patients were randomized and treated in the single-blind phase, and 413 in the double-blind phase (208, pregabalin CR; 205, placebo). Pregabalin CR significantly increased time to LTR versus placebo (Kaplan-Meier analysis) with significantly fewer LTR events with pregabalin CR than with placebo (29 [13.9%] vs. 63 [30.7%]; P<0.0001). Median time to LTR was not estimable. Pregabalin CR significantly improved weekly mean pain score versus placebo: LS mean difference (95% CI) of −1.11 (−1.47, −0.75) and −1.00 (−1.34, −0.65) (P<0.0001) from single-blind baseline and double-blind baseline, respectively. Most commonly reported adverse events in the single-blind phase were dizziness, somnolence, and peripheral edema. Pregabalin CR was well tolerated.

Discussion:

Time to LTR was significantly longer with pregabalin CR than with placebo. Safety profile of pregabalin CR was comparable to that reported for the immediate-release formulation in patients with postherpetic neuralgia.

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