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Intravenous Immunoglobulin (IVIG) for Resistant Neuropathic Pain

Information source: University of Calgary
ClinicalTrials.gov processed this data on August 23, 2015
Link to the current ClinicalTrials.gov record.

Condition(s) targeted: Neuropathic Pain

Intervention: Intravenous immunoglobulin (Biological); Normal Saline (Biological)

Phase: Phase 2

Status: Recruiting

Sponsored by: University of Calgary

Official(s) and/or principal investigator(s):
Alexander J Clark, MD, FRCPC, Principal Investigator, Affiliation: University of Calgary

Overall contact:
Alexander J Clark, MD, FRCPC, Phone: 403 943 9917, Email: john.clark@albertahealthservices.ca


This project addresses a vexing problem that has alluded the best efforts of the medical/scientific community: treatment of resistant neuropathic pain. Neuropathic pain is common and includes conditions such as diabetic neuropathy, post herpetic neuralgia and post stroke pain and is believed to affect at least 3% of adults. Surveys of patients with neuropathic pain indicate that 60% do not receive adequate relief with current treatment. Results from recent laboratory and human studies reveal a new approach to treatment. This approach is based on the findings that neuroinflammation appears to be involved in development and maintenance of neuropathic pain. This study explores the effects of an immune-modulating blood-derived product, intravenous immunoglobulin (IVIG), in treating neuropathic pain. IVIG is thought to reduce neuroinflammation contributing to neuropathic pain. If successful, the study will provide important insights into pain mechanisms and a better understanding of how IVIG relieves neuropathic pain. Hypotheses: 1. Reduction in neuroinflammation (NI) markers will co-vary with clinical indicators of pain relief 2. Patients with higher levels of markers of NI will be more likely to respond to IVIG

Clinical Details

Official title: IVIG for Treatment of Resistant Neuropathic Pain: a Preliminary Study

Study design: Allocation: Randomized, Endpoint Classification: Safety/Efficacy Study, Intervention Model: Crossover Assignment, Masking: Double Blind (Subject, Investigator, Outcomes Assessor), Primary Purpose: Treatment

Primary outcome: The primary outcome measure will consist of change in mean daily pain diary score from baseline to each week post-treatment

Secondary outcome: Measurement of neuroinflammation (NI) markers (IL-1β, IL-6, IL-8, TNF-α, MMP-9, TIMP-1)

Detailed description: This study will employ a randomized double blind cross-over design. A total of 12 subjects will be recruited for the study. Once each subject has satisfied the inclusion and exclusion criteria and provided informed consent, the subject will be randomized to either the IVIG or placebo treatment groups, using a pre-determined randomization list generated by the research office at the University of Calgary. Complete responders will begin a monitoring phase, partial and non-responders will return for a second cycle in one month. Complete responders, with prolonged relief, will cross-over to the alternative treatment when their pain returns if this occurs within 6 months of the infusion.


Minimum age: 18 Years. Maximum age: N/A. Gender(s): Both.


Inclusion Criteria:

- Age >18 years; Clinical diagnosis of treatment-resistant neuropathic pain;

- Score of 4/10 or greater on the DN4 NeP screening questionnaire;

- Bedside examination confirming symptoms of neuropathic pain;

- Moderate to severe pain;

- Completed adequate analgesic trials according to neuropathic pain clinical practice


- provides informed consent

Exclusion Criteria:

- Pregnant or lactating women;

- Clinical diagnosis of phantom limb pain;

- History of psychosis;

- current, substance dependency disorder;

- presence of clinically significant cardiac or pulmonary disorder that would

compromise participants' safety;

- severe pain disorder other than the chronic NeP under study;

- Abnormalities above 1. 5 times upper range of normal on screening CBC, blood


- Serum IgA less than <0. 05 g/L

Locations and Contacts

Alexander J Clark, MD, FRCPC, Phone: 403 943 9917, Email: john.clark@albertahealthservices.ca

Foothills Medical Centre, Calgary, Alberta, Canada; Recruiting
Alexander J Clark, MD, Phone: 403 943 9917
Patricia Muehler, Phone: 403 943 9917
Alexander J Clark, MD, Principal Investigator
Additional Information

Starting date: February 2009
Last updated: February 23, 2009

Page last updated: August 23, 2015

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