The FDA has issued a complete response letter for the supplemental New Drug Application for the use of bupivacaine liposome injectable suspension (Exparel, Pacira) in nerve block to provide postsurgical analgesia.

Exparel is already indicated for single-dose infiltration into the surgical site to produce postsurgical analgesia. The product combines bupivacaine with DepoFoam, a product delivery technology that delivers medication over a desired time period. 

Exparel represents the first multivesicular liposome local anesthetic that can be utilized in the peri- or postsurgical setting. By utilizing the DepoFoam platform, a single dose of Exparel delivers bupivacaine over time, providing reductions in cumulative pain scores with a 45% decrease in opioid consumption. The clinical benefit of the opioid reduction was not demonstrated.

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This article originally appeared on MPR