Article Abstract

Efficacy of 50 mg pregabalin for prevention of postoperative neuropathic pain after video-assisted thoracoscopic surgery and thoracotomy: a 3-month prospective randomized controlled trial

Authors: Takahiro Homma, Yoshinori Doki, Yutaka Yamamoto, Toshihiro Ojima, Yoshifumi Shimada, Naoya Kitamura, Yushi Akemoto, Yuki Hida, Naoki Yoshimura


Background: This study analyzed the preventive effect of 50 mg/day pregabalin on postoperative neuropathic pain, and any additional benefits related to sleep and respiratory function.
Methods: This prospective randomized controlled study included lung resection patients 20–89 years of age. Patients were randomly assigned to the treatment (pregabalin; initial dose, 50 mg/day) or control (non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs) group. Pregabalin patients received non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs and pregabalin (25 mg, twice daily) from the second postoperative day. Pain scores, neuropathic pain, analgesic use, respiratory function, and insomnia scale scores for 3 months after surgery were evaluated.
Results: This study included 46 patients who received pregabalin and 46 control patients. Pregabalin patients had significantly less postoperative neuropathic pain than control patients (19.6% vs. 41.3%; P=0.0404), and their duration of neuropathic pain was significantly shorter (30 vs. 90 days; P=0.024). The onset of postoperative neuropathic pain, insomnia scale scores, and respiratory function were similar between groups. No pregabalin-related adverse events were reported.
Conclusions: Pregabalin (50 mg/day) had a significant preventive effect on postoperative neuropathic pain after thoracic surgery, without side effects. Early postoperative administration of pregabalin would help prevent neuropathic pain and provide better pain control after thoracic surgery.