A randomized, double-blind, active-controlled, double-dummy, parallel-group study to determine the safety and efficacy of oxycodone/naloxone prolonged-release tablets in patients with moderate/severe, chronic cancer pain

Sam H Ahmedzai, Friedemann Nauck, Gil Bar-Sela, Björn Bosse, Petra Leyendecker, Michael Hopp
Palliative Medicine 2012, 26 (1): 50-60

OBJECTIVE: An examination of whether oxycodone/naloxone prolonged-release tablets (OXN PR) can improve constipation and maintain analgesia, compared with oxycodone prolonged-release tablets (OxyPR) in patients with moderate/severe cancer pain.

METHODS: Randomized, double-blind, active-controlled, double-dummy, parallel-group study in which 185 patients were randomized to receive up to 120 mg/day of OXN PR or OxyPR over 4 weeks. Efficacy assessments included Bowel Function Index (BFI), Brief Pain Inventory Short-Form (BPI-SF), laxative and rescue medication use. Quality of life (QoL) and safety assessments were conducted.

RESULTS: After 4 weeks, mean BFI score was significantly lower with OXN PR; mean total laxative intake was 20% lower with OXN PR. Mean BPI-SF scores were similar for both treatments and the average rate of analgesic rescue medication use was low and comparable. QoL assessments were stable and comparable with greater improvements in constipation-specific QoL assessments with OXN PR. Overall, rates of adverse drug reactions were similar.

CONCLUSIONS: OXN PR provides superior bowel function in cancer pain patients, compared with OxyPR, without compromising analgesic efficacy or safety. This study confirms that OXN PR is well tolerated and efficacious in cancer pain patients and results are in line with those seen in non-malignant pain patients.

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