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Etanercept Challenges Cortisone as Treatment for Sciatica
Date:11/7/2013

Los Angeles, California (PRWEB) November 07, 2013

A new randomized clinical trial (RCT) published in the November 1, 2013 issue of the journal Spine (1) provides new evidence for the efficacy of etanercept used off-label for relief of persistent sciatica associated with lumbar disc herniation, a common health problem with significant unmet medical need. Etanercept belongs to the class of potent anti-inflammatory drugs known as TNF inhibitors.

The new etanercept study follows a 2012 comparative effectiveness trial of epidural etanercept versus an epidural steroid injection that found etanercept to be superior to the epidural steroid(cortisone) injection(2).

The new Spine study joins three previous RCTs as the fourth RCT supporting the efficacy of etanercept for treating disc-related pain(1-4). The clinical evidence of the effectiveness of etanercept for this indication has been accumulating for more than a decade(1-9). Increasing basic science and clinical evidence supports the scientific rationale of TNF inhibition for neuroinflammation(10-19).

The first account of the favorable clinical effect of etanercept for sciatica, and the invention of epidural administration of etanercept for this indication, was published in 2001, authored by Edward Tobinick, M.D., the founder of the Institute of Neurological Recovery(INR)(20). Dr. Tobinick and his colleagues have written multiple peer-reviewed articles documenting the clinical effects of perispinal etanercept used at the INR off-label for sciatica, cervical radiculopathy, intractable low back pain and related symptoms associated with lumbar disc herniation(5-9, 21). Perispinal administration of etanercept is a patented invention of Dr. Tobinick(21). Please note that results can vary, not all patients respond, etanercept may have
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