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Cymbalta helps lower-back pain, Lilly says

August 25, 2008
Eli Lilly and Co. said its depression drug Cymbalta showed some effectiveness against chronic low back pain, according to data presented today in Spain.

The study gives Lilly evidence to perhaps get Cymbalta approved to treat yet another medical condition. The drug already has approval to treat depression, generalized anxiety disorder, diabetic nerve pain and fibromyalgia. Also, in the second quarter, Lilly asked U.S. regulators to approve Cymbalta for the management of chronic pain.

Those additional approvals have stoked Cymbalta's sales. The drug pulled in $1.26 billion in during the first six months of this year, a 31-percent increase over the same period last year.

In the latest study, 31 percent of patients given Cymbalta once a day reported a 50-percent reduction in pain, as measured by an 11-point Likert pain scale. For patients taking placebo, only 19 percent reported a 50-percent reduction in pain.

Results from the 13-week study of 236 patients were presented today at the annual congress of the European Federation of Neurological Societies in Madrid.

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