Get ready for some chili peppers! Qutenza (capsaicin) 8% patch has been approved by the FDA for PHN (post-herpetic neuralgia). PHN is a serious complication that can occur in 10 to 15% of patients who develop shingles.
Qutenza must be applied to the skin by a health care professional since placement of the patch can be quite painful, requiring use of a local topical anesthetic, as well as additional pain relief such as ice or use of opioid pain relievers. The patient must also be monitored for at least one hour since there is a risk of a significant rise in blood pressure following patch placement. The patch is manufactured by Lohmann Therapie-Systems AD of Andernach, Germany and distributed by NeurogesX Inc. of San Mateo, Calif.To read more about Qutenza, click here to visit the FDA website.