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Headache. 2000 Jul-Aug;40(7):561-7.

Solubilized ibuprofen: evaluation of onset, relief, and safety of a novel formulation in the treatment of episodic tension-type headache.

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Institute for Applied Pharmaceutical Research, Philadelphia, PA, USA.



To evaluate the relative efficacy of a new solubilized formulation of ibuprofen compared with acetaminophen caplets.


This double-blind, randomized, parallel group study evaluated 154 subjects taking a single dose of solubilized ibuprofen, 400 mg; acetaminophen, 1000 mg; or placebo for the relief of episodic tension-type headache. Time to relief was measured using a stopwatch, and overall efficacy was measured using traditional categorical pain and relief scales.


Ibuprofen capsules (liquigel), 400 mg, were significantly faster than both acetaminophen, 1000 mg, and placebo for all time-to-relief measures. Ibuprofen liquigel had a median time to first perceptible pain relief of 39 minutes compared with 47 minutes for acetaminophen and 113 minutes for placebo. For median time to meaningful relief, ibuprofen liquigel had a time of 39 minutes compared with 53 minutes for acetaminophen and more than 180 minutes for placebo (P</=.02 for both measures). In addition, ibuprofen liquigels demonstrated significantly superior overall analgesic efficacy compared with acetaminophen, 1000 mg, for the relief of episodic tension-type headache. Both active treatments had a side effect profile similar to placebo.


Although several other studies have demonstrated the overall analgesic superiority of ibuprofen to acetaminophen, this study demonstrated that the liquigel formulation also provides a clinically relevant advantage for time to analgesic effects.

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