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Gabapentin for Adults with Neuropathic Pain: A Review of the Clinical Effectiveness

Last updated: March 12, 2018
Project Number: RC0970-000
Product Line: Rapid Response
Research Type: Drug
Report Type: Summary with Critical Appraisal
Result type: Report

Question

  1. What is the clinical effectiveness of gabapentin for adults with neuropathic pain?

Key Message

The findings from four systematic reviews and one RCT for gabapentin (GBP) compared to placebo or active comparators is limited by quantity and quality of evidence for studies on neuropathic pain associated with conditions including chronic lower back pain, fibromyalgia, mixed neuropathic pain, and nerve injury pain. While some studies reported little to no difference in pain, the limited data prevent strong conclusions to be drawn for the clinical efficacy of GBP. For patients with trigeminal neuralgia, conclusions about the efficacy of GBP compared to carbamazepine could not be made. Limited evidence suggests that there is no difference between GBP and topiramate for the treatment of neuropathic pain. Common adverse events associated with GBP included somnolence, fatigue, drowsiness, and dizziness.