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Natural products as a perspective for cancer pain management: A systematic review

Gouveia, Daniele Nascimento, Guimarães, Adriana Gibara, Santos, Wagner Barbosa da Rocha, Quintans-Júnior, Lucindo José
Phytomedicine 2019 v.58 pp. 152766
adverse effects, analgesia, analgesic effect, analgesics, cannabinoids, clinical trials, death, markets, neoplasms, new drugs, pain, patients, surveys, systematic review
Cancer is the leading cause of death in the world and one of the main symptoms affecting these individuals is chronic pain, which must be evaluated and treated in its various components. Several drugs are currently used, but beyond the high cost, they have harmful side effects to patients or are transitorily effective. Ergo, there is a need to look for new options for cancer pain relief. Natural products (NPs) present themselves as strong candidates for the development of new drugs for the treatment of chronic pain, such as cancer pain.This systematic review aimed to summarize current knowledge about the analgesic profile of NPs in cancer pain.The search included PubMed, Scopus and Web of Science (from inception to June 2018) sought to summarize the articles studying new proposals with NPs for the management of oncological pain. Two independent reviewers extracted data on study characteristics, methods and outcomes.After an extensive survey, 21 articles were selected, which described the analgesic potential of 15 natural compounds to relieve cancer pain. After analyzing the data, it can be suggested that these NPs, which have targets in central and peripheral mechanisms, are interesting candidates for the treatment of cancer pain for addressing different pharmacological mechanisms (even innovative), but ensuring the safety of these compounds is still a challenge. Likewise, the cannabinoids compounds leave the front as the most promising compounds for direct applicability due to the clinical studies that have already been developed and the background already established about these effects on chronic pain.Regarding these findings, it can be concluded that the variability of possible biological sites of action is strategic for new perspectives in the development of therapeutic proposals different from those available in the current market.