One article on PainSci cites Lysakowski 2007: Does Epsom Salt Work?
PainSci commentary on Lysakowski 2007: ?This page is one of thousands in the PainScience.com bibliography. It is not a general article: it is focused on a single scientific paper, and it may provide only just enough context for the summary to make sense. Links to other papers and more general information are provided wherever possible.
Although “the biological basis for its [magnesium’s] potential antinociceptive effect is promising,” no pain-killing effect could be found in several trials of magnesium given to patients with anasthesia. It seems unlikely that magnesium would fail to relieve pain in this context, and yet succeed when absorbed from Epsom salts baths.
~ Paul Ingraham
original abstract †Abstracts here may not perfectly match originals, for a variety of technical and practical reasons. Some abstacts are truncated for my purposes here, if they are particularly long-winded and unhelpful. I occasionally add clarifying notes. And I make some minor corrections.
BACKGROUND: Randomized trials have reached different conclusions as to whether magnesium is a useful adjuvant to postoperative analgesia.
METHODS: We performed a comprehensive search (electronic databases, bibliographies, all languages, to 4.2006) for randomized comparisons of magnesium and placebo in the surgical setting. Information on postoperative pain intensity and analgesic requirements was extracted from the trials and compared qualitatively. Dichotomous data on adverse effects were combined using classic methods of meta-analysis.
RESULTS: Fourteen randomized trials (778 patients, 404 received magnesium) tested magnesium laevulinate, gluconate or sulfate. With magnesium, postoperative pain intensity was significantly decreased in four (29%) trials, was no different from placebo in seven (50%), and was increased in one (7%); two trials (14%) did not report on pain intensity. With magnesium, postoperative analgesic requirements were significantly reduced in eight (57%) trials, were no different from placebo in five (36%), and were increased in one (7%). Magnesium-treated patients had less postoperative shivering (relative risk 0.38, 95% confidence interval 0.17-0.88, number-needed-to-treat 14). Seven trials reported on magnesium serum levels. In all, serum levels were increased in patients who received magnesium; in six, serum levels were decreased in those who received placebo.
CONCLUSIONS: These trials do not provide convincing evidence that perioperative magnesium may have favorable effects on postoperative pain intensity and analgesic requirements. Perioperative magnesium supplementation prevents postoperative hypomagnesemia and decreases the incidence of postoperative shivering. It may be worthwhile to further study the role of magnesium as a supplement to postoperative analgesia, since this relatively harmless molecule is inexpensive, and the biological basis for its potential antinociceptive effect is promising.
- “The use of intravenous magnesium sulfate on postoperative analgesia in orthopedic surgery: A systematic review of randomized controlled trials,” Peng et al, Medicine (Baltimore), 2018.
This page is part of the PainScience BIBLIOGRAPHY, which contains plain language summaries of thousands of scientific papers & others sources. It’s like a highly specialized blog. A few highlights:
- Cannabidiol (CBD) products for pain: ineffective, expensive, and with potential harms. Moore 2023 J Pain.
- Inciting events associated with lumbar disc herniation. Suri 2010 Spine J.
- Prediction of an extruded fragment in lumbar disc patients from clinical presentations. Pople 1994 Spine (Phila Pa 1976).
- Characteristics of patients with low back and leg pain seeking treatment in primary care: baseline results from the ATLAS cohort study. Konstantinou 2015 BMC Musculoskelet Disord.
- Effectiveness and cost-effectiveness of universal school-based mindfulness training compared with normal school provision in reducing risk of mental health problems and promoting well-being in adolescence: the MYRIAD cluster randomised controlled trial. Kuyken 2022 Evid Based Ment Health.