Pacira Pharmaceuticals, Inc. recently announced results from a pooled analysis of IMPROVE, a series of open-label prospective, Phase 4 clinical studies designed to compare post-surgical narcotic use and outcomes associated with EXPAREL (bupivacaine liposome injectable suspension) as the foundation of a multi-modal analgesic regimen, versus a standard opioid-based pain management regimen. The analysis, published in this month’s issue of the Journal of Pain Research, concluded that in comparison to the current standard of care, an EXPAREL-based multimodal regimen was associated with significant reductions in opioid consumption, incidence of opioid-related adverse events (ORAEs), length of hospital stay and total hospital costs.

The IMPROVE studies were conducted at 13 centers and evaluated a total of 191 patients, who underwent three frequently performed gastrointestinal surgeries: open colectomy, laparoscopic colectomy and ileostomy reversal. Of the 191 patients included in the analysis, 105 received an opioid-based analgesic regimen via intravenous patient-controlled analgesia (PCA), while 86 patients received an EXPAREL-based multimodal pain management regimen. According to the analysis, the EXPAREL group was associated with:

  • A 60 percent reduction in total narcotic consumption.
  • A 67 percent reduction in incidence of ORAEs.
  • A 1.4 day reduction in median length of hospital stay.
  • A $2,455 savings in mean per-patient hospitalization costs.

“EXPAREL has the potential to change the postsurgical pain management landscape where narcotics have long been the only effective option, despite their inherent risks,” said Stephen M. Cohen, MD, MBA, FACS, FASCRS, Atlanta Colon and Rectal Surgery, PC, and the lead author of the IMPROVE manuscript.

Pacira Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (NASDAQ: PCRX) is a specialty pharmaceutical company focused on the clinical and commercial development of new products that meet the needs of acute care practitioners and their patients.