Therapeutic Strategies for Cancer Treatment Related Peripheral Neuropathies

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

25 Scopus citations


Chemotherapy-induced peripheral neuropathy (CIPN) is a common toxicity associated with multiple chemotherapeutic agents. CIPN may have a detrimental impact on patients’ quality of life and functional ability, as well as result in chemotherapy dose reductions. Although symptoms of CIPN can improve with treatment completion, symptoms may persist. Currently, the treatment options for CIPN are quite limited. Duloxetine, a serotonin-norepinephrine reuptake inhibitor, has the most evidence supporting its use in the treatment of CIPN. Other agents with potential benefit for the treatment of established CIPN include gabapentinoids, venlafaxine, tricyclic antidepressants, and a topical gel consisting of the combination of amitriptyline, ketamine, and baclofen; none of these, however, has been proven to be helpful and ongoing/future studies may well show that they are not beneficial. The use of these agents is often based on their efficacy in the treatment of non-CIPN neuropathic pain, but this does not necessarily mean that they will be helpful for CIPN-related symptoms. Other nonpharmacologic interventions including acupuncture and Scrambler therapy are supported by positive preliminary data; however, further larger, placebo-controlled trial data are needed to confirm or refute their effectiveness.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)567-580
Number of pages14
JournalCurrent treatment options in oncology
Issue number4
StatePublished - 2014


  • Chemotherapy-induced peripheral neuropathy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Pharmacology (medical)


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