So another group of drugs that have been used
in the treatment of chronic pain are some
anticonvulsants. These reduce neuronal
excitability and may help some patients
with peripheral neuropathy. And the two that are
most commonly stated are Gabapentin
which are used in the treatment of diabetic neuropathy.
And Trigeminal neuralgia, which is a condition in which
the face becomes intensely painful,
and in which allodynia, this
business of barely touching the skin, results
in exquisite pain. And, gabapentin
and carbamazepine have been used in the treatment
of that condition. They both cause some dizziness,
some somnolence, confusion, ataxia, they're not
drugs that you would take just for fun.
There's a newer drug in the family
called Pregabalin, which is a new drug
in this family. It has fewer side effects
than gabapentin from which it is
derived, and it's aggressively marketed
and cost much more than the other drugs.