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Once-Daily Dose of Pregabalin (Lyrica) for Fibromyalgia Studied

  [ 5 votes ]   [ Discuss This Article ] • June 15, 2014

Editor's comment: Currently pregabalin, best known as Lyrica, is prescribed as a twice-a-day capsule. The clinical trial being reported here is for a controlled-release version of Lyrica that would only have to be taken once a day.

Once-daily controlled-release pregabalin in the treatment of patients with fibromyalgia: a Phase III, double-blind, randomized withdrawal, placebo-controlled study.


Objective: Safety and efficacy of a once-daily controlled-released (CR) formulation of pregabalin was evaluated in patients with fibromyalgia using a placebo-controlled, randomized withdrawal design.

Research design and methods: This multicenter study included 6-week single-blind pregabalin CR treatment followed by 13-week double-blind treatment with placebo or pregabalin CR. The starting dose of 165 mg/day was escalated during the first 3 weeks, up to 495 mg/day based on efficacy and tolerability. Patients with ?50% reduction in average daily pain score at the end of the single-blind phase were randomized to continue pregabalin CR at the optimized dose (330–495 mg/day) or to placebo. The primary endpoint was time to loss of therapeutic response (LTR), defined as <30% pain reduction relative to single-blind baseline or discontinuation owing to lack of efficacy or adverse event (AE). Secondary endpoints included measures of pain severity, global assessment, functional status, tiredness/fatigue, and sleep.

Results: 441 patients entered the single-blind phase, and 63 were randomized to pregabalin CR and 58 to placebo.
  • The median time to LTR (Kaplan-Meier analysis) was significantly longer in the pregabalin CR group than placebo (58 vs. 22 days, p=0.02).

  • By trial end, 34/63 (54.0%) pregabalin CR and 41/58 (70.7%) placebo patients experienced LTR.

  • Significantly more patients reported “benefit from treatment” (Benefit, Satisfaction, and Willingness to Continue Scale) in the pregabalin CR group; no other secondary endpoints were statistically significant.

  • Most AEs were mild-to-moderate in severity (most frequent: dizziness, somnolence).

  • The percentage of pregabalin CR patients discontinuing because of AEs was 12.2% and 4.8% in the single-blind and double-blind phases, respectively (placebo, 0%).

Conclusions: Time to LTR was significantly longer with pregabalin CR versus placebo in fibromyalgia patients who initially showed improvement with pregabalin CR, indicating maintenance of response. Pregabalin CR was well-tolerated in most patients. Generalizability may be limited by study duration and selective population.

Clinical Trial Registration: NCT01271933

Source: Current Medical Research and Opinion, May 27, 2014. By Lesley M. Arnold, Pierre Arsenault, Cynthia Huffman, Jeffrey L. Patrick, Michael Messig, Marci L. Chew, Luis Sanin, Joseph M. Scavone, Lynne Pauer and Andrew G. Clair.

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