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Effectiveness and tolerability of tapentadol sustained release in the Australian setting

Marc A. Russo, MBBS, DA(UK), FANZCA, FFPMANZCA, Danielle M. Santarelli, PhD


Objective: To assess the effectiveness and tolerability of tapentadol sustained release (SR) following its introduction to the Australian private market.

Design: A retrospective audit of routine clinical practice with data collection beginning 2 months after the first tapentadol SR prescription.

Setting: A multidisciplinary Australian pain clinic.

Patients: Fifty patients who were prescribed tapentadol SR as part of routine clinical management at the pain clinic.

Interventions: Trial of tapentadol SR with subsequent dose titration if the patient was satisfied with or tolerant of the medication.

Main outcome measures: Patient-reported pain outcome, side effects, medication adherence, and concomitant analgesic medications.

Results: Sixty-eight percent of patients reported major reductions in pain. Seventy-two percent of patients tolerated and adhered to treatment and 76 percent reported no side effects. Pain outcome was independent of pain type and prior opioid exposure; however, patients taking tapentadol in combination were more likely to report a positive outcome (Pearson χ2 = 9.867, n = 46, p = 0.0072).

Conclusions: Tapentadol was effective and generally well tolerated in the majority of patients for neuropathic, nociceptive and mixed pain types and this was regardless of prior opioid use.


tapentadol, opioid, postmarket, neuropathic pain, nociceptive pain

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