Relative efficacy of 32P and 89Sr in palliation in skeletal metastases. (1/1563)

32p and 89Sr have been shown to produce significant pain relief in patients with skeletal metastases from advanced cancer. Clinically significant pancytopenia has not been reported in doses up to 12 mCi (444 MBq) of either radionuclide. To date, no reports comparing the relative efficacy and toxicity of the two radionuclides in comparable patient populations have been available. Although a cure has not been reported, both treatments have achieved substantial pain relief. However, several studies have used semiquantitative measures such as "slight," "fair," "partial" and "dramatic" responses, which lend themselves to subjective bias. This report examines the responses to treatment with 32P or 89Sr by attempting a quantification of pain relief and quality of life using the patients as their own controls and compares toxicity in terms of hematological parameters. METHODS: Thirty-one patients with skeletal metastases were treated for pain relief with either 32P (16 patients) or 89Sr (15 patients). Inclusion criteria were pain from bone scan-positive sites above a subjective score of 5 of 10 despite analgesic therapy with narcotic or non-narcotic medication, limitation of movement related to the performance of routine daily activity and a predicted life expectancy of at least 4 mo. The patients had not had chemotherapy or radiotherapy during the previous 6 wk and had normal serum creatinine, white cell and platelet counts. 32P was given orally as a 12 mCi dose, and 89Sr was given intravenously as a 4 mCi (148 MBq) dose. The patients were monitored for 4 mo. RESULTS: Complete absence of pain was seen in 7 of 16 patients who were given 32P and in 7 of 15 patients who were given 89Sr. Pain scores fell by at least 50% of the pretreatment score in 14 of 16 patients who were given 32P and 14 of 15 patients who were given 89Sr. Mean duration of pain relief was 9.6 wk with 32P and 10 wk with 89Sr. Analgesic scores fell along with the drop in pain scores. A fall in total white cell, absolute granulocyte and platelet counts occurred in all patients. Subnormal values of white cells and platelets were seen in 5 and 7 patients, respectively, with 32P, and in 0 and 4 patients, respectively, after 89Sr therapy. The decrease in platelet count (but not absolute granulocyte count) was statistically significant when 32P patients were compared with 89Sr patients. However, in no instance did the fall in blood counts require treatment. Absolute granulocyte counts did not fall below 1000 in any patient. There was no significant difference between the two treatments in terms of either efficacy or toxicity. CONCLUSION: No justification has been found in this study for the recommendation of 89Sr over the considerably less expensive oral 32P for the palliation of skeletal pain from metastases of advanced cancer.  (+info)

Prevalence and treatment of pain in older adults in nursing homes and other long-term care institutions: a systematic review. (2/1563)

BACKGROUND: The high prevalence of pain in older adults and its impact in this age group make it a public health issue, yet few studies of pain relief focus on older adults. Residents of long-term care facilities have more cognitive impairment than their community-living counterparts and may have difficulty reporting the presence and severity of pain. This systematic literature review was conducted to determine the prevalence of pain, and the type and effectiveness of interventions that have been used to treat pain in residents of nursing homes. METHODS: Studies were identified by searching MEDLINE (from January 1966 to May 1997), HEALTH (from January 1975 to May 1997), CINAHL (from January 1982 to April 1997), AGELINE (from January 1978 to April 1997) and the Cochrane Library (1997, issue 1) and by performing a manual search of textbooks and reference lists. Studies of any methodological design were included if they estimated the prevalence of pain in nursing homes or other long-term care institutions or evaluated interventions for the treatment of pain in residents. Of the 14 eligible studies, 12 were noncomparative studies, 1 was a comparison study with nonrandomized contemporaneous controls, and 1 was a randomized controlled trial. Information on several factors was extracted from each study, including study design, number of patients and facilities, main outcomes measured, methods used to identify and detect pain, prevalence and types of pain, and interventions used to treat pain. The strength of the evidence provided by each study was also assessed. RESULTS: In the 6 studies with data from self-reporting or chart reviews, the prevalence of pain ranged from 49% to 83%. In the 5 studies with data on analgesic use only, the prevalence of pain ranged from 27% to 44%. Only 3 studies, with just 30 patients in total, evaluated an intervention for the treatment of pain. INTERPRETATION: Despite the high prevalence of pain in residents of nursing homes, there is a lack of studies evaluating interventions to relieve their pain. The authors make recommendations for future studies in this area.  (+info)

Antihyperalgesic effects of infection with a preproenkephalin-encoding herpes virus. (3/1563)

To test the utility of gene therapeutic approaches for the treatment of pain, a recombinant herpes simplex virus, type 1, has been engineered to contain the cDNA for an opioid peptide precursor, human preproenkephalin, under control of the human cytomegalovirus promoter. This virus and a similar recombinant containing the Escherichia coli lacZ gene were applied to the abraded skin of the dorsal hindpaw of mice. After infection, the presence of beta-galactosidase in neuronal cell bodies of the relevant spinal ganglia (lacZ-containing virus) and of human proenkephalin (preproenkephalin-encoding virus) in the central terminals of these neurons indicated appropriate gene delivery and expression. Baseline foot withdrawal responses to noxious radiant heat mediated by Adelta and C fibers were similar in animals infected with proenkephalin-encoding and beta-galactosidase-encoding viruses. Sensitization of the foot withdrawal response after application of capsaicin (C fibers) or dimethyl sulfoxide (Adelta fibers) observed in control animals was reduced or eliminated in animals infected with the proenkephalin-encoding virus for at least 7 weeks postinfection. Hence, preproenkephalin cDNA delivery selectively blocked hyperalgesia without disrupting baseline sensory neurotransmission. This blockade of sensitization was reversed by administration of the opioid antagonist naloxone, apparently acting in the spinal cord. The results demonstrate that the function of sensory neurons can be selectively altered by viral delivery of a transgene. Because hyperalgesic mechanisms may be important in establishing and maintaining neuropathic and other chronic pain states, this approach may be useful for treatment of chronic pain and hyperalgesia in humans.  (+info)

Intermittent compression units for severe post-phlebitic syndrome: a randomized crossover study. (4/1563)

BACKGROUND: Although uncommon, severe post-phlebitic syndrome may be associated with persistent, intractable pain and swelling that interfere with work and leisure activities. This study was performed to determine whether intermittent compression therapy with an extremity pump benefits patients with this condition and, if so, whether the benefit is sustained. METHODS: The study was a randomized crossover trial. Over the period 1990 to 1996, all patients in the clinical thromboembolism program of an Ontario teaching hospital who had a history of deep vein thrombosis and intractable symptoms of post-phlebitic syndrome were recruited into the study. The study involved using an extremity pump twice daily for a total of 2 months (20 minutes per session). The patients were randomly assigned to use either a therapeutic pressure (50 mm Hg) or a placebo pressure (15 mm Hg) for the first month. For the second month, the patients used the other pressure. A questionnaire assessing symptoms and functional status served as the primary outcome measure and was administered at the end of each 1-month period. A symptom score was derived by summing the scores for individual questions. At the end of the 2-month study, patients were asked to indicate their treatment preference and to rate the importance of the difference between the 12 pressures. Treatment was considered successful if the patient preferred the therapeutic pressure and stated that he or she would continue using the extremity pump and that the difference between the therapeutic and placebo pressures was of at least slight importance. All other combinations of responses were considered to represent treatment failure. Patients whose treatment was classified as successful were offered the opportunity to keep the pump and to alter pressure, frequency and duration of pump use to optimize symptom management. In July 1996 the authors contacted all study participants whose treatment had been classified as successful to determine whether they were still using the pump and, if so, whether they were still deriving benefit. RESULTS: In total 15 consecutive patients (12 women and 3 men) were enrolled in the study. The symptom scores were significantly better with the therapeutic pressure (mean 16.5) than with the placebo pressure (mean 14.4) (paired t-test, p = 0.007). The treatment for 12 of the patients (80%, 95% confidence interval 52% to 96%) was considered successful. Of these, 9 patients continued to use the pump beyond the crossover study and to derive benefit. INTERPRETATION: The authors conclude that a trial of pump therapy is worthwhile for patients with severe post-phlebitic syndrome and that a sustained beneficial response can be expected in most such patients.  (+info)

Empirically supported treatments in pediatric psychology: disease-related pain. (5/1563)

OBJECTIVE: To evaluate psychological literature addressing interventions for disease-related pain in children. METHODS: We conducted a literature review of all studies using psychological interventions for pain stemming directly from disease process as well as pain secondary to disease treatment. RESULTS: Few empirically validated psychological approaches to the treatment of disease pain were found. Although existing intervention studies do not meet Chambless criteria, some promising strategies were identified. CONCLUSIONS: Clinical evidence suggests that cognitive-behavioral strategies for the management of disease pain in children are promising and manualized, controlled intervention studies are needed.  (+info)

Clinical and radiological differences between traumatic and idiopathic coccygodynia. (6/1563)

Several reports of coccygodynia have been confined to the causes, the methods of treatment, and the methods of radiological examination. As far as we know, there has been no previous study about the objective measurement of the coccyx. The purpose of this study was to find the possible cause of idiopathic coccygodynia by comparing the clinical and radiological differences between traumatic and idiopathic coccygodynia by innovative objective clinical and radiological measurements. Thirty-two patients with coccygodynia were evaluated retrospectively. We divided the patients into two groups. Group 1 consisted of 19 patients with traumatic coccygodynia and group 2 consisted of 13 patients with idiopathic coccygodynia. We reviewed medical records and checked age, sex distribution, symptoms, and treatment outcome in each group. We also reviewed coccyx AP and lateral views of plain radiological film and measured the number of coccyx segments and the intercoccygeal angle in each group. The intercoccygeal angle devised by the authors was defined as the angle between the first and last segment of the coccyx. We also checked the intercoccygeal angle in a normal control group, which consisted of 18 women and 2 men, to observe the reference value of the intercoccygeal angle. The outcome of treatment was assessed by a visual analogue scale based on the pain score. Statistical analysis was done with Mann-Whitney U test and Chi-square test. Group 1 consisted of 1 male and 18 female patients, while group 2 consisted of 2 male and 11 female patients. There were no statistically significant differences between the traumatic and idiopathic coccygodynia groups in terms of age (38.7 years versus 36.5 years), male/female sex ratio (1/18 versus 2/11), and the number of coccyx segments (2.9 versus 2.7). There were significant differences between the traumatic and idiopathic coccygodynia groups in terms of the pain score (pain on sitting: 82 versus 47, pain on defecation: 39 versus 87), the intercoccygeal angle (47.9 degree versus 72.2 degrees), and the satisfactory outcome of conservative treatment (47.4% versus 92.3%). The reference value of the intercoccygeal angle in the normal control group was 52.3 degrees, which was significantly different from that of the idiopathic group. In conclusion, the intercoccygeal angle of the idiopathic coccygodynia group was greater than that of the traumatic group and normal control group. Based on the results of this study, the increased intercoccygeal angle can be considered a possible cause of idiopathic coccygodynia. The intercoccygeal angle was a useful radiological measurement to evaluate the forward angulation deformity of the coccyx.  (+info)

Seven year follow up of children presenting to the accident and emergency department with irritable hip. (7/1563)

OBJECTIVE: To assess an established protocol for managing children with irritable hip in the accident and emergency department. METHODS: Retrospective seven year follow up of all children managed under an established hip pain protocol. The main outcome measure was of failure of the protocol to identify serious pathology. RESULTS: A total of 103 children met the criteria for assessment using the protocol. Sixty were allowed home, and outpatient follow up arranged. All of these children except one were diagnosed as having transient synovitis. This child had Perthes' disease and was diagnosed at first presentation. Forty three children were admitted, with eight subsequently having a diagnosis other than transient synovitis of the hip. It was possible to review 80 children seven years later. Of these children no long term problems were encountered. CONCLUSION: The protocol used in the department for children with irritable hip is successful in identifying those children with transient synovitis of the hip, or other benign causes, and therefore not requiring hospital admission. Long term follow up showed that no serious pathology was missed.  (+info)

A systematic review of treatments for the painful heel. (8/1563)

OBJECTIVE: To establish the efficacy for treatments of pain on the plantar aspect of the heel. METHODS: Systematic review of the published and unpublished literature. Electronic search of Medline, BIDS and the Cochrane database of clinical trials. An assessment of the quality of the reporting was made of studies included in the review. MAIN OUTCOME MEASURE: patients' pain scores. STUDY SELECTION: randomized controlled trials, published or unpublished, that evaluated treatments used for plantar heel pain. Foreign language papers were excluded. RESULTS: Eleven randomized controlled trials were included in the review. These evaluated some of the most frequently described treatments (steroid injections and orthoses) and some experimental therapies (extracorporeal shock wave therapy and directed electrons). The methodological assessment scores of the published trials were low; small sample sizes and failure to conceal the treatment allocation from study participants prevents more definitive statements about the efficacy of treatments. In 10 of the included trials, patients in both the intervention and control arms reported improved pain scores at the final outcome measure. CONCLUSIONS: Although much has been written about the treatment of plantar heel pain, the few randomized controlled trials involve small populations of patients and do not provide robust scientific evidence of treatment efficacy.  (+info)