Utilization of Magnesium for the Treatment of Chronic Pain

Anesth Pain Med. 2021 Feb 6;11(1):e112348. doi: 10.5812/aapm.112348. eCollection 2021 Feb.


Context: The International Association for the Study of Pain (IASP) defines chronic pain as pain that persists or recurs for longer than 3 months. Chronic pain has a significant global disease burden with profound effects on health, quality of life, and socioeconomic costs.

Evidence acquisition: Narrative review.

Results: There are several treatment options, including pharmacological therapy, physical rehabilitation, psychological therapies, and surgical interventions, for chronic pain management. Magnesium has been FDA-approved for several indications including hypomagnesemia, arrhythmia, prevention of seizures in eclampsia/preeclampsia, and constipation. Magnesium has been used for numerous off-label uses, notably for acute and chronic pain management. The mechanism of magnesium in pain management is primarily through its action as a voltage-gated antagonist of NMDA receptors, which are involved in pain transduction.

Conclusions: This narrative review will focus on the current evidence and data surrounding the utilization of magnesium as a treatment option for chronic pain.

Keywords: Abdominal Pain; Chronic Pain; Chronic Regional Pain Syndrome; Infusion; Intravenous; Magnesium Sulfate; Peripheral Neuropathy.

Publication types

  • Review