In a randomized, double-blind crossover trial in 30 elderly patients suffering from moderate to severe pain, the analgesic efficacy, tendency to produce mental confusion and side effect profile of meptazinol 100 mg orally were compared with those of pentazocine 25 mg orally were compared with those of pentazocine 25 mg orally and placebo. Both the active drugs produced significantly better analgesia than placebo but meptazinol also provided significantly better pain relief than pentazocine, whilst at the same time causing less mental confusion. Side effects were unremarkable. Meptazinol appears to be a better general purpose oral analgesic in this group of patients than pentazocine.
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