Acta Medica Colombiana
Print version ISSN 0120-2448
Objectives: the objectives of this observation study were to collect pharmaco-epidemiological information about the neuropathic pain treatment (NP) in the colombian population. To assess utilization trends of analgesics and prolonged release (retard) Tramadol prescription schemes. Materials and methods: descriptive prospective study of a cohort. Data collection years: 2004 and 2005. Data from clinical histories of 494 patients with NP diagnosis were collected. Results: average age was 62 (±14) years. More prevalent in women, (ratio 6:4). Pain intensity was moderate to severe. Radiculopaties and neuropaties were the most frequent causes. (77%) One out of each ten patients received the appropriate therapy for NP. About 44% (n=133) of the patients received NSAIDS (non steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs) that are useless and put the patients at risk, especially in chronic use. 40% of the patients received sub-therapeutic dose of the analgesics. One forth of the patients recorded analgesics use for more than 6 months. One out of five patients had two analgesics prescribed for combined use. Four out of five patients responded in stable form to retard tramadol. Conclusions: this observation revealed inappropriate techniques in the treatment of NP. The NP was not managed from the very beginning with the first line medications recommended in the international guidelines. About 50% of the population included in the study received at first analgesics that have shown to be inefficient in the management of NP, such as the NSAIDS.
Keywords : Colombia; neuropathic pain; pharmaco-epidemiology; tramadol prolonged release.