Topical Compounding Creams Used In Pain Management

By Chris Faubel, M.D.Topical compounded creams for pain

Topical administration of medications for pain management has become increasingly more common.  Pharmaceutical companies are getting in the game with products such as Flector patches, Voltaren gel, Pennsaid topical solution, Lidoderm patches, and Qutenza patches.  Numerous over-the-counter products also exist.

Many patients need more than just one medication to treat their pain.  And for some, the adverse effects and allergies of oral medications is too much to bear.  For these patients, sometimes the best solution is having a compounding pharmacy put together a number of different medications with different mechanisms of action into a compounded cream that is applied directly over the site of pain.

Benefits of Compounded Creams

  • Delivered directly to the pain receptors
  • Minimizes systemic absorption
  • Targets numerous pain receptors at once
  • Fewer adverse effects (such as renal and gastric effects from NSAIDs)
  • Reduces drug-drug interactions
  • Non-addictive formulations
  • Good for patients with difficulty swallowing pills

Commonly Compounded Medications for Pain

  • Ketamine 5-10%
  • Lidocaine 1-10%
  • Gabapentin 5-10%
  • Amitriptyline 2-10%
  • Imipramine 2-10%
  • Cyclobenzaprine 2%
  • Baclofen 2%
  • Clonidine 0.2%
  • Ketoprofen 10%
  • Diclofenac 2-10%
  • Nifedipine 2-16%

Below is an image of various drugs that are used in compounded creams for the treatment of pain conditions.  Proposed mechanism of action and uses are also listed.

Download a PDF of the document HERE.

Topical compounded creams for pain - page 1 Topical compounded creams for pain - page 2

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2 Comments

  1. LA SONJA DAVIS says:

    I AM A SICKLE CELL BETA THALLASEMIA PATIENT WITH MULTIPLE PAIN CONDITIONS AND WANTED TO NOW HOW WOULD I GO ABOUT TRYING THE COMPOUND CREAM FOR PAIN. PLEASE SEND ME AN EMAIL OR GIVE ME A CALL (773) 488-5999 OR CELL (773) 809-6901

    • I have been disappointed with compounding creams from three different pharmacies. It is one of the things I may do as a “last hope”. I definitely wouldn’t expect it to help with sickle cell pain, but then again, I’ve never tried it for that.

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