The effects of pre-emptive treatment of postherpetic neuralgia with amitriptyline: a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial.

Seventy-two patients older than 60 years of age who received a diagnosis of herpes zoster (HZ) were entered into a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial of daily amitriptyline 25 mg. Treatment with either amitriptyline or placebo continued for 90 days after diagnosis. Pain prevalence at 6 months was the primary outcome. Results showed that early treatment with low-dose amitriptyline reduced pain prevalence by more than one-half (p < 0.05; odds ratio, 2.9:1) This finding makes a strong case for the pre-emptive administration of amitriptyline, in combination with an antiviral drug, to elderly patients with acute herpes zoster.
AuthorsD Bowsher
JournalJournal of pain and symptom management (J Pain Symptom Manage) Vol. 13 Issue 6 Pg. 327-31 (Jun 1997) ISSN: 0885-3924 [Print] UNITED STATES
PMID9204652 (Publication Type: Clinical Trial, Journal Article, Randomized Controlled Trial, Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't)
Chemical References
  • Adrenergic Uptake Inhibitors
  • Amitriptyline
  • Adrenergic Uptake Inhibitors (administration & dosage, therapeutic use)
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Amitriptyline (administration & dosage, therapeutic use)
  • Chi-Square Distribution
  • Dose-Response Relationship, Drug
  • Double-Blind Method
  • Female
  • Herpes Zoster (complications, drug therapy)
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Neuralgia (drug therapy, epidemiology, etiology)
  • Odds Ratio
  • Pain Measurement (drug effects)
  • Prevalence
  • Prognosis

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