The purpose of this, open-label, non-comparative study, was to evaluate the efficacy on quality of life and the efficacy of gabapentin monotherapy in patients with chronic radiculopathy.
Thirty-five patients with radicular pain and diagnosed as L4, L5 or S1 radiculopathy were treated with oral gabapentin from a total of 300 mg per day once up to a total of 1800 mg per day divided in 3 doses for eight-week trial period. Quality of life, functional disability and psychological mood of the patients were assessed using the Nottingham Healthy Profile (NHP), Oswestry Low Back Pain Disability Questionnaire (ODQ) and Beck Depression Inventory (BDI).
Of the patients (n = 35), 25 were females and 10 were males (mean age: 41.8 +/- 10.4, range: 24-60 years); mean radiculopathy duration was 16.4 +/- 14.2 months (range: 3-48 months). The pain intensity at rest, quality of life, functional disability and depression scores were determined significantly improved after treatment and 4 months compared to baseline scores (p < 0.001). 1.5 points compared to baseline for at pain rest and 15 points improvement on the ODQ were obtained.
Gabapentin may provide benefits in terms of alleviation of pain and overall quality of life in patients with chronic radiculopathy.