Two phase III clinical studies have proven the safety of tapentadol immediate release tablets (IR) in treating lower back pain or osteoarthritis pain of the hip or knee over a three-month period.
In Europe, one in five adults experiences chronic pain in their life. To reduce pain effectively, especially with chronic pain conditions, the use of strong analgesics such as opioids is expanding.
However, research has found that many patients who receive pain therapy do not feel satisfied with their treatment and stop their opioid therapy against medical recommendation.
The main reasons they cite are side effects such as nausea and vomiting in the first few days and constipation in the course of ongoing treatment. Gastrointestinal tolerability is one of the leading causes of patients stopping taking prescription pain medications.
In one of the phase III studies, treatment with tapentadol produced a significant reduction in the incidence of gastrointestinal side effects compared with oxycodone IR.
It also showed that patients with end-stage joint disease who were treated with a 50mg or 75mg tapentadol IR reported significantly higher pain relief compared with placebo.
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