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Prescribing Advice for GPs

An NHS Prescribing Advisers' Blog

SMC May Update

The Scottish Medicines Consortium (SMC) has issued its monthly advice on new medicines.

Pregabalin (Lyrica®) has been accepted for restricted use for the treatment of
peripheral neuropathic pain in adults. The review notes that evidence of efficacy is limited being based upon open-label, uncontrolled, non-randomised studies with small numbers of patients. As such pregabalin is only recommended in patients who have not benefited from or failed to tolerate conventional first and second line treatments.

[Update] This review also recommended that treatment is stopped if the patient has not shown sufficient benefit within 8 weeks of reaching the maximally tolerated therapeutic dose.
Thanks to Rita Shah for reminding me of this point.

Action: Clinicians should be aware of the recommendations of the SMC. Routine use of rejected and restricted medicines should be avoided.

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