Capsaicin 8% Patch for Spinal Cord Injury Neuropathic Pain

  • End date
    Dec 25, 2022
  • participants needed
  • sponsor
    The University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio
Updated on 11 August 2021
spinal cord
neuropathic pain
spinal cord disorder


A prospective case control study to determine the effectiveness and longevity of 8% capsaicin patch(es) in treating neuropathic pain in persons with spinal cord injury. The investigators will study spinal cord injury patients at South Texas Veterans Health Care Systems Spinal Cord Injury inpatient unit and outpatient clinics.


The investigators will recruit ~ 20 patients with chronic spinal cord injury (SCI) and chronic neuropathic pain (>6months) below level of injury who have failed multiple pharmacological agents. Pre-study data collection will include subjective description of pain, baseline visual analog scale (VAS), numeric pain rating scale (NPRS), a numerical scale such as short form (SF) 36 form that measures quality of life parameters, subjective functional independence (FIM) scores, and pain diagrams will be obtained on each participant. Written informed consent will be obtained. After randomization patients will be assigned to a different sequence of treatment.

All patients will receive either the treatment and control patches in a randomized order for a total of three treatment periods (control, treatment, treatment for example). When assigned to received treatment arm of study patients will receive Qutenza Capsaicin 8% patch(es) applied for 1 hour after pre- treatment with topical lidocaine. The control group will receive a low dose (0.04%) amount of capsaicin in patch form using an identical application procedure.

Investigators will give each patient a diary to self record daily VAS/NPRS scores. Investigators will then schedule routine f/u via telephone call at 2, 4, 8, and 12 weeks post application to accurately report onset of relief and obtain NPRS scores at 2, 4, 8, 12 week points. Patients will follow up in clinic at the end of the 12 week study to repeat data collection using our quality of life scale (SF 36) and FIM scores. Investigators will then use data analysis to record percentage of reduction in NPRS/ VAS, and changes in SF 36 and FIM scores at any given time point vs baseline. For those that continue to have pain relief at 12 week mark we will periodically call every 4 months after study completion to assess for total duration of pain relief for up to 1 year post application.

Condition Spinal Cord Injury, Myelopathy, Trauma, Peripheral Neuropathy, Neuralgia, Pain, Post-Surgical Pain, Pain (Pediatric), Spinal Cord Injuries, Wounds, Spinal Cord Disorders, neuropathic pain
Treatment Capsaicin 8% Patch, Low Dose Capsaicin 0.04% gel
Clinical Study IdentifierNCT02441660
SponsorThe University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio
Last Modified on11 August 2021

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