Pepper drug eases pain after groin surgery- study

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WASHINGTON, Oct 14 (Reuters) The compound that makes chili peppers spicy can ease the pain that follows groin surgery, Danish researchers reported.

They yesterday said purified capsaicin reduced pain for at least three days following groin hernia surgery without causing any significant side effects.

Dr Eske Aasvang and colleagues at the Juliana Marie Center in Copenhagen, Denmark, tested 41 men getting hernia operations. Half got injections of ultra-purified capsaicin, which is odorless and tasteless.

The rest got placebos. All of the men also got the painkillers ibuprofen and acetaminophen, the researchers told a meeting of the American Society of Anesthesiologists in San Francisco.

The men injected with capsaicin reported significantly less pain during the three days after surgery than those given placebo.

These differences evened out after three days.

''The potential for a much longer duration potentially weeks of pain relief induced by a single administration of ultra-purified capsaicin should be investigated in patients with severe postoperative pain,'' Aasvang said in a statement.

REUTERS ARB AS0845

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