Exogenous melatonin in the treatment of pain: a systematic review and meta-analysis

Oncotarget. 2017 Nov 21;8(59):100582-100592
Authors: Zhu C, Xu Y, Duan Y, Li W, Zhang L, Huang Y, Zhao W, Wang Y, Li J, Feng T, Li X, Hu X, Yin W

Melatonin is an important hormone for regulating mammalian circadian biology and cellular homeostasis. Recent evidence has shown that melatonin exerts anti-nociception effects in both animals and humans. However, according to clinical trials, the anti-nociception effects of melatonin are still controversial. The aim of this meta-analysis was to investigate the anti-nociception effects of melatonin premedication. The primary outcome was the effects of melatonin on pain intensity. The secondary outcomes included the number of patients with analgesic requirements, total analgesic consumption, and brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) levels. In total, 19 studies were included in the current meta-analysis. The pooling data show that melatonin significantly decreased the pain intensity, as evidenced by the pain scores. Moreover, melatonin administration also reduced the proportion of patients with analgesic requirements and BDNF levels. However, the effects of melatonin on total analgesic consumption still require further confirmation. Collectively, the current meta-analysis supports the use of melatonin for anti-nociception.

PMID: 29246003 [PubMed]

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