In an n=30 open study PEA was administered for 60 days to diabetic patients. All parameters related to neuropathic pain were reduced. Sadly enough no NRS was documented.
The outcome vartiables were: 1: the MNSI score (a questionnaire assessing the symptoms of diabetic peripheral neuropathy which provides a valid and noninvasive measurement of diabetic neuropathy.
2. TSS was used to assess the intensity and frequency of symptoms such as neuropathic pain, burning, paresthesia, and numbness/lack of sensitivity.
3. Finally, the diverse manifestations of neuropathic pain were analyzed in depth by means of the Neuropathic Pain Symptom Inventory (NPSI). (The NPSI also allows for grouping of the various pain symptoms into subcategories, such as spontaneous superficial burning pain, deep spontaneous pressing pain, paroxysmal pain, and evoked pain).
Biochemistry etc documented the safety of PEA, no abnormalities were found.
In the discussion the authors explained the rationale behind the clinical value of PEA:
We are now aware of the existence of molecules involved in endogenous protective mechanisms activated in the body as a result of different types of tissue damage or stimulation of inflammatory responses and nociceptive fibers. In this context the N-acylethanolamine PEA, which is abundant in the nervous system and produced “on-demand,” has seen a remarkable rise in the number of studies published on its anti-inflammatory actions in the past 15 years.
A PEA key role may be to maintain cellular homeostasis in the face of external stressors provoking, for example, inflammation. At the same time, there could well be pathological scenarios where PEA endogenous production is inadequate to control the ensuing inflammatory cascade. In such instances, exogenously applied PEA may prove to be beneficial. Indeed, as discussed earlier, a number of preclinical studies show PEA to have anti-inflammatory and analgesic effects in chronic and/or neuropathic pain, as well as in patients suffering from neuropathic pain associated with pathologies of various etiologies.
Source: Chiara Schifilliti, Lelio Cucinotta, Viviana Fedele, Carmela Ingegnosi, Salvatore Luca, and Carmelo Leotta, “Micronized Palmitoylethanolamide Reduces the Symptoms of Neuropathic Pain in Diabetic Patients,” Pain Research and Treatment, vol. 2014, Article ID 849623, 5 pages, 2014. doi:10.1155/2014/849623