Findings From A Large-Scale Study To Evaluate Muscle Soreness Support Shift Away From Using Anti-Inflammatories
Experts Gather to Discuss Changing Conventional Wisdom of Sports Pain Management
New York, NY (October 29, 2003) - Findings from a large-scale study that evaluated muscle soreness suggest there is no difference in patient outcome after treatment with extended-release acetaminophen, the medicine in TYLENOLŪ 8 Hour, or the maximum over-the-counter dose of ibuprofen. These results are considered important, because acetaminophen is not an anti-inflammatory medicine. This supports the growing body of evidence showing that inflammation may not be the root cause of certain types of pain, as was once believed.
Data for this randomized, double-blind, parallel-group study were collected from 377 participants enrolled upon completion of a recent 26.2 mile marathon. To measure the relief of post-marathon muscle soreness, 184 patients were randomized to extended release acetaminophen (1300 mg three times a day), while 193 patients received ibuprofen (400 mg three times per day) for five days. Major findings included:
- No difference in muscle soreness after treatment with acetaminophen and the maximum OTC dose of ibuprofen.
- Results suggest that there was no difference in patient satisfaction ratings between the two arms of the study.
- Results of the marathon study suggest that interference with training and disturbance of sleep due to muscle soreness were comparable for the ibuprofen and acetaminophen arms of the study.
"We now know that many types of sports injuries lack inflammation. In fact, when inflammation does appear, it may be a necessary part of the natural healing process," said Steven Stovitz, M.D., director of Sports Medicine Education, University of Minnesota Dept. of Family Practice. "In view of the excellent safety profile of acetaminophen, and the results of this study, which demonstrated equivalent analgesic effect to OTC ibuprofen following physical activity, acetaminophen should be considered a first-line pharmaceutical treatment for pain relief following physical activity."
These data were presented during a one-day conference led by an expert panel including Chris Carmichael, coach of five-time Tour de France winner Lance Armstrong, Steven Stovitz, M.D., leading sports medicine physician, and Deena Drossin, marathon star, to discuss the changing role of inflammation in sports injury pain management. The study was sponsored by McNeil Consumer & Specialty Pharmaceuticals, the maker of TYLENOLŪ 8 Hour.
"The ultimate goal of any training program - whether it's for an elite athlete or the everyday athlete - is to avoid injury," said Chris Carmichael, chairman and founder of Carmichael Training Systems, Colorado Springs, CO. "However, when an injury does occur, the objective is to get that person back into the routine as quickly as possible. I have always used acetaminophen to manage many of my own aches and pains and frequently recommend it to my athletes. I'm glad to see that my preference is further substantiated with clinical data."