Oxycodone Effective for Herpes Zoster Pain Relief

Randomized trial finds drug superior to gabapentin and placebo in relieving pain
Apr 1, 2009

WEDNESDAY, April 1 (HealthDay News) — In patients with herpes zoster, controlled-release oxycodone effectively relieves pain and is generally well-tolerated, according to a study published in the April issue of Pain.

Robert H. Dworkin, Ph.D., of the University of Rochester School of Medicine and Dentistry in Rochester, N.Y., and colleagues randomly assigned 87 patients to receive seven days of treatment with famciclovir in combination with 28 days of treatment with either controlled-release oxycodone, gabapentin or placebo.

The researchers found that controlled-released oxycodone significantly reduced the mean worst pain during days 1 to 14 and that gabapentin was not significantly more effective than placebo. Although they found that controlled-release oxycodone was generally safe, significantly more oxycodone patients than placebo patients discontinued treatment (27.6 percent versus 6.9 percent), primarily because of constipation. More…