Objective: To evaluate efficacy and safety of lacosamide compared with placebo in painful diabetic polyneuropathy.
Research design and methods: Diabetic patients with at least moderate neuropathic pain were randomized to placebo or lacosamide 400 (in a slow or standard titration) or 600 mg/day over 6-week titration and 12-week maintenance periods. Primary efficacy criterion was intra-individual change in average daily Numeric Pain Rating Scale score from baseline to the last 4 weeks.
Results: For the primary end point, pain reduction was numerically but not statistically greater with lacosamide compared with placebo (400 mg/day, P = 0.12; 600 mg/day, P = 0.18). Both doses were significantly more effective compared with placebo over the titration (P = 0.03, P = 0.006), maintenance (P = 0.01, P = 0.005), and entire treatment periods (P = 0.03, P = 0.02). Safety profiles between titration schemes were similar.
Conclusions: Lacosamide reduced neuropathic pain and was well tolerated in diabetic patients, but the primary efficacy criterion was not met, possibly due to an increased placebo response over the last 4 weeks.