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Int J Clin Pract. 2008 Mar;62(3):471-9. doi: 10.1111/j.1742-1241.2007.01688.x.

KADIAN (morphine sulfate extended-release) capsules for treatment of chronic, moderate-to-severe, nonmalignant pain.

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1
Pain Management Center, Brigham and Women's Hospital, Chestnut Hill, MA 02467, USA. ross@zeus.bwh.harvard.edu

Abstract

Chronic pain, one of the most common reasons for which patients seek medical attention, is defined as pain that persists beyond the normal healing time, usually about 3 months. Chronic pain can be malignant or nonmalignant in origin, or can appear in the absence of identifiable pathology. Pharmacological treatment options include non-opioid and opioid analgesics, as well as adjuvant medications. Opioids, the most potent analgesics, are typically reserved for the treatment of chronic, moderate-to-severe pain that has not responded to non-opioid therapy. Morphine remains the gold standard among commonly used opioids. Long-acting opioids are formulated to offer continuous delivery of analgesia around the clock. These agents are formulated to maintain therapeutic blood levels of morphine, with minimal fluctuations. KADIAN Capsules, which contain polymer-coated extended-release morphine sulfate pellets, is one such formulation available for the treatment of moderate-to-severe pain for which an analgesic is indicated for more than a few days. This article reviews KADIAN and identifies unique features from early pharmacokinetic and pharmacodynamic studies, recent data on pharmacokinetic interactions with alcohol and results from recent trials in treating nonmalignant pain.

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