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Efficacy and Tolerability of Pantoprazole Compared with Misoprostol for the Prevention of NSAID-Related Gastrointestinal Lesions and Symptoms in Rheumatic PatientsStupnicki T.a · Dietrich K.b · González-Carro P.c · Straszak A.d · Terjung A.e · Thomas K.B.e · Lühmann R.e · Fischer R.e
aGeneral Hospital Graz-West, Department of Gastroenterology, Graz, Austria; bBahnhofstrasse 56, Saarbrücken, Germany; cHospital General ‘La Mancha-Centro’, Alcázar de San Juan, Spain; dDepartment of Internal Medicine, City Hospital, Siemianowice Śląskie, Poland; eALTANA Pharma AG, Konstanz, Germany
Aim: To compare the efficacy and tolerability of pantoprazole 20 mg once daily (o.d.) with misoprostol 200 µg twice daily (b.i.d.), administered for 6 months to rheumatic patients who required long-term therapy with nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) and who were at increased risk of developing gastrointestinal lesions. Methods: This randomized, double-blind, multicenter, parallel group comparison study was performed with rheumatic patients (n = 515) who were likely to take NSAIDs continuously for at least 6 months. Patients were 55 years or older, at risk to develop gastrointestinal lesions, had less than five erosions/petechiae in the stomach and duodenum, no ulcers, no reflux esophagitis (endoscopy-proven), and gastrointestinal symptoms of at most moderate intensity. A minimum daily dose was defined for NSAIDs (COX-2 inhibitors were not available at the time). Patients were randomized to take either pantoprazole 20 mg o.d. (n = 257) or misoprostol 200 µg b.i.d. (n = 258) for 6 months while continuing NSAID therapy. Endoscopy was performed at baseline, 3, and 6 months. Results: Pantoprazole was superior to misoprostol (p < 0.001) with regard to ‘therapeutic failure’ (occurrence of a peptic ulcer, ten or more erosions/petechiae in the stomach/duodenum, reflux esophagitis, severe gastrointestinal symptoms, and/or ‘likely’ or ‘definitely’ related adverse event leading to study termination). Estimated remission rates at 3 and 6 months (Kaplan-Meier life-table analysis) were, respectively, 93 and 89% (pantoprazole) and 79 and 70% (misoprostol). Pantoprazole was superior to misoprostol (p = 0.005) with regard to ‘endoscopic failure’ (occurrence of a peptic ulcer, ten or more erosions/petechiae in the stomach/duodenum, or reflux esophagitis) after 6 months. Estimated remission rates at 3 and 6 months were, respectively, 98 and 95% (pantoprazole) and 95 and 86% (misoprostol). Patients discontinuing the study early due to adverse events ‘likely’ or ‘definitely’ related to the study drug accounted for 13/257 (5%) in the pantoprazole and 33/258 (13%) in the misoprostol treatment groups. Conclusion: Pantoprazole 20 mg o.d. is superior to misoprostol 200 µg b.i.d. in the prevention of NSAID-induced gastrointestinal lesions and symptoms in patients on continuous long-term treatment with NSAIDs due to rheumatic diseases and at risk to develop such lesions or symptoms.
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