Escitalopram as a Treatment for Pain in Polyneuropathy
Many people with polyneuropathy suffer from pain which is difficult to treat. Escitalopram is a relatively new drug used in the treatment of depression. Escitalopram’s action mechanism on the brain suggests that escitalopram also may have an effect on neuropathic pain. This study will test the efficacy of escitalopram in patients with painful polyneuropathy.
|Study Design:||Allocation: Randomized
Endpoint Classification: Efficacy Study
Intervention Model: Crossover Assignment
Primary Purpose: Treatment
|Official Title:||Escitalopram as a Treatment for Pain in Polyneuropathy. A Double-Blind, Randomized, Placebo Controlled Trial.|
- pain relief
- effect on total pain and different subtypes of pain
- effect on quantitative sensory testing
- effect on pain related sleep disturbances
- effect on quality of life
- to determine if depression before treatment predicts an eventual pain relieving effect of escitalopram
|Study Start Date:||December 2004|
|Study Completion Date:||April 2007|
Tricyclic antidepressants appear to be the most efficacious treatment of painful polyneuropathy. However, these drugs are contraindicated in some patients and a substantial number of patients decline treatment due to side-effects. Therefore, effective drugs that are better tolerated are needed. Clinical and basic research has demonstrated that drugs with serotonergic action can alleviate neuropathic pain. Escitalopram increases serotonin concentration in the central nervous system, suggesting that it might be a potential alternative to current treatments of neuropathic pain. The aim of this study is to test if escitalopram would relieve painful polyneuropathy.
Comparisons: Treatment with 20 mg escitalopram daily will be compared in a cross-over design with placebo. Each treatment period will last 6 weeks. During the last week of each treatment period, the dose will be tapered.
|Danish Pain Research Center, Aarhus University Hospital, Noerrebrogade 44|
|Aarhus, Denmark, 8000|
|Dept. of Neurology, Odense University Hospital, Sdr. Boulevard 29|
|Odense, Denmark, 5000|
|Principal Investigator:||Soeren H Sindrup, MD, PhD||Odense University Hospital, Dept. of neurology|