Novel Therapies for the Treatment of Neuropathic Pain: Potential and Pitfalls

SOURCE: Journal of Clinical Medicine. 11(11) (no pagination), 2022. Article Number: 3002.


AUTHORS: Shinu P.; Morsy M.A.; Nair A.B.; Al Mouslem A.K.; Venugopala K.N.; Goyal M.; Bansal M.; Jacob S.; Deb P.K.

ABSTRACT: Neuropathic pain affects more than one million people across the globe. The quality of life of people suffering from neuropathic pain has been considerably declining due to the unavail-ability of appropriate therapeutics. Currently, available treatment options can only treat patients symptomatically, but they are associated with severe adverse side effects and the development of tolerance over prolonged use. In the past decade, researchers were able to gain a better understanding of the mechanisms involved in neuropathic pain; thus, continuous efforts are evident, aiming to develop novel interventions with better efficacy instead of symptomatic treatment. The current review discusses the latest interventional strategies used in the treatment and management of neuro-pathic pain. This review also provides insights into the present scenario of pain research, particularly various interventional techniques such as spinal cord stimulation, steroid injection, neural blockade, transcranial/epidural stimulation, deep brain stimulation, percutaneous electrical nerve stimulation, neuroablative procedures, opto/chemogenetics, gene therapy, etc. In a nutshell, most of the above techniques are at preclinical stage and facing difficulty in translation to clinical studies due to the non-availability of appropriate methodologies. Therefore, continuing research on these interventional strategies may help in the development of promising novel therapies that can improve the quality of life of patients suffering from neuropathic pain.