Topical 5% lidocaine patches for treating postherpetic neuralgia: a survey among nurses and patients

Pergolizzi JV Jr., Nalamachu s, Mitchell k, Paladini A, Taylor R Jr.,  Varrassi G
Topical 5% lidocaine patches for treating postherpetic neuralgia: a survey among nurses and patients
Signa Vitae. 2021.doi:10.22514/sv.2021.114


Introduction: Postherpetic neuralgia (PHN) is associated with moderate to severe pain with peripheral and central mechanisms. While there is no clear-cut first-line therapeutic approach to PHN pain control, lidocaine patches are frequently used as monotherapy or part of a multimodal pain regimen.

Methods: An online survey, the first of its kind, was conducted among PHN patients (n = 153) and nurses (n = 151) in order to determine clinical and patient knowledge, attitudes and practices toward the lidocaine patch and current unmet needs.

Results: Results of the survey indicated that PHN patients are prescribed a mean of 2.6 medications to control their PHN pain, including the lidocaine patch. There were negative responses related to the patches’ ability to adhere to the skin. Patients reported the use of tape to hold the patches in place and/or patches that detached completely, truncating the therapeutic dose period. Most nurses (53%) found the biggest obstacle to PHN pain control was noncompliance and 98% stated that reliable patch adhesion for the intended 12-hour application was “somewhat important” or “very important” for PHN pain control. Forty-five percent of nurses said that poor patient adherence to PHN analgesic regimens was related to poor adhesion of the lidocaine patch.

Conclusion: A new bioequivalent lidocaine patch has been developed with better adhesive characteristics, nine-fold greater bioavailability, and improved form factor.

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L'Associazione Italiana per lo Studio del Dolore è il capitolo italiano dell'International Association for the Study of Pain IASP® e della European Pain Federation EFIC®