In a nutshell
This study examined tanezumab as a treatment of pelvic pain in patients with interstitial cystitis or prostatitis. Authors present preliminary findings of reduced pain with tanezumab, most notably in patients with interstitial cystitis.
A urinary tract infection (UTI) is a bacterial infection that affects part of the urinary tract (consisting of the bladder and the urethra). UTIs are common, with most people experiencing a UTI at least once. Less commonly, UTIs can lead to interstitial cystitis, a chronic inflammation of the bladder that causes bladder and pelvic pain. An inflammation of the prostate gland (prostatitis) can cause similar symptoms. Collectively, these conditions are known as urological chronic pelvic pain syndromes (UCPPS). UCPSS are often debilitating and difficult to treat.
Tanezumab is a drug that has recently been developed for the treatment of chronic pain. Tanezumab targets the growth of nerves involved in transmitting pain signals. Whether tanezumab is effective in treating UCPPS is still under investigation.
Methods & findings
The aim of this study was to examine the effectiveness of tanezumab in reducing pelvic pain due to UCPSS.
Results from 3 separate studies were pooled into a single analysis. A combined total of 208 patients with UCPSS were randomly assigned to receive either tanezumab or placebo (a control substance with no active effect). 128 of the patients were women with interstitial cystitis. 80 were men with prostatitis. A questionnaire measured the change in pain (over the past 24 hours) 6-8 weeks after treatment.
Overall, tanezumab reduced pain more than placebo. From a scale of 1 to 10 (with 10 being the highest pain score), tanezumab reduced pain by an average of 0.6 points compared to placebo. Improvements were significantly greater in women with interstitial cystitis (average 0.99 point pain reduction) than in men with prostatitis (average 0.17 point pain reduction). Men with prostatitis did not see a significant improvement in pain.
Pins and needles, skin sensitivity, and painful patches of skin, were the most common side effect associated with tanezumab (reported in 9.6 to 15.4% of patients). Most were considered mild to moderate and were resolved before the end of the study.
The bottom line
Authors concluded that tanezumab could be a promising therapy for pain due to UCPSS. Improvements in pelvic pain were more likely in patients with interstitial cystitis than with prostatitis.
The fine print
Larger studies are needed to confirm these preliminary findings. Tanezumab is not currently approved by the FDA.
Published By :
Journal of Urology
Nov 11, 2015
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