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Vitamin B12 significantly reduces the use of Analgesics in Post-Herpetic pain

Vitamin B12 significantly reduces the use of Analgesics in Post-Herpetic pain

A new study published in the journal Complementary Therapies in Medicine has reported that vitamin B12 was considered to be an effective complementary therapy for post-herpetic neuralgia (PHN) patients.

The study revealed that vitamin B12 injection significantly decreased the use of analgesics in these patients.

PHN deteriorates the quality of life and involves higher healthcare utilization. J.Y Wang and associates conducted a systematic review and a meta-analysis to evaluate the efficacy of vitamin B12 supplementation in PHN patients.

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The researchers performed a meta-analysis of 4 randomized controlled trials identified after a search on PubMed, EMBASE, CINAHL, and Cochrane databases. The trials had included 383 participants with PHN who were randomly assigned to receive either placebo or vitamin B12 supplementation. The authors analyzed the results of pain indicators in the selected trials.

The researchers found that patients who received vitamin B12 supplementation showed a significant decrease in the Numeric Rating Scale score compared with those treated with placebo. Moreover, the quality of life significantly improved in the vitamin B12 supplementation group and vitamin B12 injection significantly decreased the use of analgesics.

The study concluded that in patients with postherpetic neuralgia (PHN), vitamin B12 supplementation significantly reduced pain and improved quality of life.

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Postherpetic neuralgia (PHN) is nerve pain which occurs due to damage to a peripheral nerve caused by the reactivation of the varicella zoster virus. Typically, the nerve pain (neuralgia) is confined to an area of skin innervated by a single sensory nerve, which is known as a dermatome. PHN is defined as dermatomal nerve pain that persists for more than 90 days after an outbreak of herpes zoster affecting the same dermatome. Despite numerous treatment advances, many patients remain refractory to the current therapies and continue to have pain, physical and psychological distress.

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Source: With niputs from Complementary Therapies in Medicine

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