Timely repair and robust regeneration after traumatic peripheral nerve injury are essential to ensure optimal recovery. Pregabalin (Lyrica; Pfizer Inc., Morris Plains, NJ), frequently prescribed to attenuate neuropathic pain in patients with traumatic nerve injury, was evaluated for its potential to alter nerve regeneration in the rat sciatic crush model. Rats were randomly assigned to one of three groups of 12 animals each: (1) sham surgery and pregabalin injections; (2) crush injury and pregabalin injections; and (3) crush injury and saline vehicle injections. Nerve regeneration was evaluated with weekly walking tracks and histomorphometry. There were no significant differences in sciatic function index or histomorphometric parameters at the 21-day endpoint between the pregabalin-treated rats undergoing crush injury and the saline-treated controls. Although we have observed a subjectively improved clinical course in human patients treated with pregabalin after traumatic nerve injury, the effect does not appear to be due to accelerated nerve regeneration.
- Crush injury