Table of Contents
Volume 2014, Article ID 853826, 5 pages
Clinical Study

The Effect of Intravenous Lidocaine on Trigeminal Neuralgia: A Randomized Double Blind Placebo Controlled Trial

11st Anaesthesiology Clinic, Pain Relief and Palliative Care Unit, Aretaieion University Hospital, 76 Vas. Sofias Avenue, 11527 Athens, Greece
2Department of Neurology, Evangelismos General Hospital, 45-47 Ipsilantou Street, 10676 Athens, Greece

Received 7 January 2014; Accepted 4 March 2014; Published 10 March 2014

Academic Editors: P. J. Cabot and M. Takeda

Copyright © 2014 Evmorfia Stavropoulou et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Trigeminal neuralgia is the most common neuralgia. Its therapeutic approach is challenging as the first line treatment often does not help, or even causes intolerable side effects. The aim of our randomized double blind, placebo controlled, crossover study was to investigate in a prospective way the effect of lidocaine in patients with trigeminal neuralgia. Twenty patients met our inclusion criteria and completed the study. Each patient underwent four weekly sessions, two of which were with lidocaine (5 mgs/kg) and two with placebo infusions administered over 60 minutes. Intravenous lidocaine was superior regarding the reduction of the intensity of pain, the allodynia, and the hyperalgesia compared to placebo. Moreover, contrary to placebo, lidocaine managed to maintain its therapeutic results for the first 24 hours after intravenous infusion. Although, intravenous lidocaine is not a first line treatment, when first line medications fail to help, pain specialists may try it as an add-on treatment. This trial is registered with NCT01955967.