An Overview of Long-Acting Injectable Drugs for Knee Pain

extended-release drugs for knee pain

Knee pain is a common issue for adults because it is caused by general stress from normal daily activities. In fact, around 25% of U.S. adults experience knee pain, and many of them require treatment to make day-to-day activities easier.

Long-acting injectables are able to target specific anatomical areas like eyes, ears, knees, and other spots to relieve pain and reduce systemic exposure. This means they are capable of providing a means of comfort for patients experiencing problems like osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, bursitis, or tendonitis. Learn more about the benefits of extended-release drugs for knee pain and how you can help patients by manufacturing them.

Benefits of Using Extended-Release Drugs for Knee Pain

Extended-release drugs and long-acting injectables for knee pain are designed to release the active ingredient over time. These medications encourage the maintenance of the therapeutic levels in the body for an extended time period and provide prolonged pain relief. The outcome of prolonged pain relief is less frequent dosages and happier patients.

Other benefits of using these types of medication include:

  • Reduced side effects – Extended-release drugs encourage lower overall doses when compared to the immediate-release competition. This can lead to fewer side effects, as the patient will be exposed to a lower peak concentration of the drug.
  • Improved patient adherence – Since these types of drugs require less frequent doses, patients are more likely to adhere to their prescribed regimen. This can lead to better pain management outcomes, making them the go-to choice for more patients.
  • Minimized fluctuations in pain levels – When patients are given immediate-release formulations they may experience highs and lows from the drug concentration that leave them with fluctuations in the extremity of their knee pain. Using extended-release medications for knee pain limits this issue by providing a consistent and controlled release.

Types of Extended-Release Drugs for Knee Pain

There are currently two main types of extended-release injectable drugs for knee pain. The type that is administered will depend on the patient’s problem, pre-existing health conditions, and more.

Corticosteroid Injections

Corticosteroid injections reduce pain and inflammation in the knee joint, thanks to their powerful anti-inflammatory agents. These synthetic drugs mimic the effects of natural hormones produced by adrenal glands. The relief is often found quickly, with many patients experiencing reduced pain in just a few days. The relief should last around three to four months, depending on the patient and the severity of their condition.

A prominent example of a corticosteroid long-acting injectable for knee pain is inserting Triamcinolone LAI in the knee. Another common type is ZILRETTA®.

Hyaluronic Acid Injections

Another type of long-acting injectable drug for knee pain is hyaluronic acid injections. Known for their ability to replenish knee lining and reduce friction on the joints, hyaluronic acid injections are an extremely effective treatment for those fighting osteoarthritis. These injections also protect the cartilage and bone from further damage, relieving pain effectively. While they may not have the longevity of a typical long-acting injectable drug for knee pain, they will provide patient relief for between two and six months.

Hyaluronic knee injections currently on the market include Durolane, Euflexxa, Hyalgan, Monovisc, and more.

Using Best Practices When Manufacturing Long-Acting Injectables for Knee Pain

Adhering to best practices when producing long-acting injectable drugs for knee pain is essential, and it’s something the team at Oakwood Labs is committed to. Doing so assures your patients that the solution was created using rigorous processes and that the medication is safe.

Let’s discuss some of the best practices for creating extended-release drugs for knee pain and how Oakwood Labs can provide.

  • Conduct clinical research and development – The process starts with conducting pre-clinical studies to assess feasibility, safety, and efficacy. Then, it is time to study the population to create the intended patient demographic, as well as execute clinical trials to ensure that the solution is relevant to the problem and population.
  • Create optimal formula – The next step is to research and develop a formulation that will provide sustained and effective pain relief without complications or introducing new side effects. Be sure to check this over time and ensure that the extended-release drug for knee pain will continue to provide the most benefits to the patient.
  • Determine dosing and administration – Based on clinical research results, you will want to determine an appropriate dosage and administration schedule. Then, create clear and concise instructions for proper administration for patient safety and reduced risk.
  • Assess safety – Once you develop the proper instructions for administering the long-acting injectable for knee pain, it is important to conduct comprehensive safety assessments that define adverse effects, drug interactions, and any risks. Then, be sure to monitor unexpected side effects during post-marketing surveillance.
  • Provide education and training – Collect comprehensive educational materials that healthcare professionals and patients can look at to ensure the best understanding of the long-acting injectable for knee pain as well as any side effects.
  • Adhere to ethics – Ethics are a priority in pharmaceutical manufacturing, covering everything from reporting results to ensuring equal access. Be sure to adhere to ethical standards in all aspects of development.
  • Choose a GMP manufacturer – Oakwood Labs operates in an FDA-approved cGMP manufacturing facility that is capable of conducting Phase I, II, and III clinical materials, delivering commercial products, and more. We also have decades of industry experience, making us the ideal destination for manufacturing long-acting injectables for knee pain. As your partner, we can offer short lead times, robust systems, CMC development capabilities, and so much more.

Contact Us to Learn More

If you are interested in manufacturing extended-release drugs for knee pain, Oakwood Labs would be happy to partner with you.

Contact us today to get started.

Mark Ilhan