Treatment Trends in Trigeminal Neuralgia
Patients with trigeminal neuralgia face a significant burden of illness and have needs currently unmet by available therapies, according to data presented at the American Pain Society’s 36th Annual Scientific Meeting in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.1
There is currently only 1 drug — carbamazepine — approved by the US Food and Drug Administration for the treatment of trigeminal neuralgia, which is characterized by severe, unilateral, paroxysmal pain in the area of the trigeminal nerve. However, many other drugs and procedures are used off label in an attempt to quell the orofacial pain.
In order to better understand current treatment patterns, a team of researchers led by Ning Wu, PhD, of Biogen, examined data from a cohort of 3685 patients (72% women) with trigeminal neuralgia from the Truven Health MarketScan® database. Patients were at least 18 years old with at least 3 years of follow-up available after first diagnosis. Common comorbidities included hypertension (41.2%), osteoarthritis (18.5%), lower back pain (18.1%), and diabetes (12.7%).