Methodological Issues in the Design of Analgesic Clinical Trials

Russell K. Portenoy and Eduardo Bruera

in Issues in Palliative Care Research

Published in print September 2003 | ISBN: 9780195130652
Published online November 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780199999842 | DOI:
Methodological Issues in the Design of Analgesic Clinical Trials

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This chapter discusses some of the firm conclusions from the experience of analgesic research and highlights areas of analgesic trial methodology that have had relatively little exploration, particularly repeated-dose studies in chronic pain, where an ongoing dialogue among symptom researchers might move all of these fields ahead. Several generations of analgesic researchers have come to a consensus on approaches to single-dose analgesic studies. Because the studies of other symptoms may share some of the same challenges, palliative care researchers may benefit from a familiarity with the analgesic study design literature. However, many clinical research problems with pain and other symptoms have received rather little study, including optimizing the sensitivity of symptom-based measures, combination studies, and the choice of control groups in repeated-dose studies. The solution to many of these problems may be facilitated by frequent discussions among clinical researchers working in different symptom areas.

Keywords: analgesic research; chronic pain; palliative care; symptom researchers; combination studies; repeated-dose studies

Chapter.  7469 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Palliative Medicine

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