Memantine for chronic pain… what’s the verdict?
Memantine has been shown to have pain-relieving properties in small clinical studies but a review of the evidence in the European Journal of Pain is less promising.
“Among the 11 studies looking at chronic pain treatment, the difference in end pain score with memantine was not significant,” the authors explain. “In two surgical studies using memantine for pain prevention, memantine decreased pain intensity. Dizziness was significantly more common with memantine.
“The current evidence regarding the use of memantine for chronic pain is limited and uncertain. Despite its potential, pain relief achieved in clinical studies is small and is associated with an increase in dizziness.”
So despite a sound rationale, the benefit of using memantine for chronic pain is unclear. It certainly has the potential to decrease pain but it can also increase common adverse effects.
The authors conclude:
“No clear recommendations can be made about [memantine’s] routine clinical use until larger and more definitive studies are conducted.”
Click here for the original research.
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