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Papers of the Week

Papers: 2 Nov 2019 - 8 Nov 2019

Pharmacology/Drug Development

2020 Mar




Evaluating the impact of gabapentinoids on sleep health in patients with chronic neuropathic pain: a systematic review and meta-analysis.


Kapustin D, Bhatia A, McParland A, Trivedi A, Davidson A, Brull R, Singh M
Pain. 2020 Mar; 161(3):476-490.
PMID: 31693543.


Chronic neuropathic pain (NP) is debilitating and impacts sleep health and quality of life. Treatment with gabapentinoids (GB) has been shown to reduce pain, but its effects on sleep health have not been systematically evaluated. The objective of this systematic review and meta-analysis was to assess the relationship between GB therapy dose and duration on sleep quality, daytime somnolence, and intensity of pain in patients with neuropathic pain. Subgroup comparisons were planned for high vs. low dose GB, where 300mg per day or more of pregabalin was used to classify high-dose therapy. Trial data was segregated by duration less than 6 weeks and 6 weeks or greater. Twenty randomized controlled trials were included. Primary outcome measures included pain-related sleep interference and incidence of daytime somnolence. Secondary outcomes included daily pain scores (NRS 0-10) and patient global impression of change (PGIC). Significant improvement in sleep quality was observed after 6 weeks of GB treatment when compared to placebo (SMD 0.39, 95% CI 0.32 to 0.46 p<.001). Increased daytime somnolence was observed among all GB-treated groups when compared to placebo. Treated patients were also more likely to report improvement of PGIC scores. Pain scores decreased significantly in patients both after 6 weeks of treatment (p<.001) and in trials less than 6 weeks (p=0.017) when compared to placebo. Our data demonstrates that GBs have a positive impact on sleep health, quality of life, and pain in patients with NP syndromes. However, these benefits come at the expense of daytime somnolence.