Versatis (lidocaine patch)
Versatis is approved for local treatment of postherpetic neuralgia (PHN) in adults. Versatis is a medicated plaster containing 5 % lidocaine (also known as lignocaine in the UK).
There is little evidence to support the superior effect of Versatis in comparison with placebo, and a significant share of patients experience no effect at all. However, some experience effect if they suffer from allodynia (pain in response to touch ). The adverse effects are primarily localized skin reactions and are the cause of treatment discontinuation for less than 5 % of the patients.
No comparative studies with other local treatment options, like Qutenza (capsaicin), have been conducted.
Treatment with Versatis can be tried in patients experiencing insurmountable side effects or if current treatment regimens are not efficient. Versatis can also be considered in patients with severe allodynia.
The effectiveness of treatment with Versatis should be re-evaluated after 2-4 weeks. Treatment should be discontinued if no effect is experienced in this period of time, or if any potential relief is attributable only to the plaster’s protection of the skin (1).
A patch of 10 cm x 14 cm costs 32.10 Dkr. The monthly cost, when using on average 1.03-1.7 patches a day, is between 991.89 Dkr. – 1,637.10 Dkr. Versatis was marketed on February 21st, 2011, and is only on prescription. At the present time, there is no reimbursement for Versatis.
The Institute for Rational Pharmacotherapy, April 6th, 2011.