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September 2008 Off the Wire . . .

 

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News Article 02raw

Sativex Study Confirms Long Term Effectiveness In MS Neuropathic Pain

Main Category: Multiple Sclerosis
Article Date: 13 Sep 2008
Results from a new study investigating the benefits of Sativex in neuropathic pain in people with multiple sclerosis (MS) have shown it gave long-term pain relief.

The study followed 42 people with MS who took Sativex - a cannabis-based drug trialled by GW Pharmaceuticals. This randomised withdrawal study evaluated 42 people with central neuropathic pain who had previously been in a Sativex MS neuropathic pain study and who continued to take Sativex on an open label basis for 12 weeks. They were then randomised to Sativex or placebo for a further 4 weeks in a double-blinded manner. The purpose of this 4-week study was to assess the maintenance of pain control in patients who remain on Sativex versus those who switch to placebo.

The study found that people taking Sativex maintained or improved their response whereas the symptoms of those on placebo deteriorated. The latter group reported significantly higher levels of pain.

Dr Laura Bell, research communications officer at the MS Society said: 'Neuropathic pain is a significant and depressing symptom of MS and any treatment that can offer pain relief will be a welcome step forward.

'This trial is important as it further reinforces early clinical evidence that suggests Sativex may be an effective treatment for pain in MS.

'Sativex is also being trialled for its beneficial effects on spasticity in MS and we look forward to the results of this study at the beginning of 2009 which will inform the UK drug regulators decision on whether to licence this in the UK.'

MS Society

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