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Maria Rosaria Natale, Chiara Degirolamo, Fabio Perversi, Giustino Varrassi

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Meeting Report


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Chronic pain is a major health concern, albeit underestimated in times of a pandemic. With about a third of pain patients without a diagnosis and delayed referral to pain therapy specialists, the current management of chronic pain requires significant re-evaluation. The COVID-19 pandemic has, on the one hand, made the gaps in health systems more evident and, on the other, acted as a catalyst for a profound transformation in pain care. Following an in-depth context analysis, the Science of Relief 2.0 Event brought together clinicians operating in pain therapy centers throughout Italy with the aim of identifying concrete solutions and sharing proposals to optimize the organization of chronic pain management and treatment through working groups and educational sessions. This document illustrates the salient points of the event and discusses its implications for clinical practice.

Keywords: capsaicin, functionality, lidocaine, neuropathic pain, nociceptive pain, patient journey, quality of life, tapentadol.


Il dolore cronico è una problematica sanitaria rilevante, sebbene sottovalutata in tempo di pandemia. Con circa un terzo dei pazienti con dolore senza una diagnosi e un ritardato rinvio a specialisti afferenti ai centri di terapia del dolore, l’attuale gestione del dolore cronico richiede una significativa rivalutazione. La pandemia da COVID-19 ha da un lato reso più evidenti le lacune dei sistemi sanitari e dall’altro ha agito da catalizzatore per una profonda trasformazione della cura del dolore. A seguito di una approfondita analisi di contesto, l’Evento Science of Relief 2.0 ha riunito clinici operanti nei centri di terapia del dolore distribuiti sul territorio italiano con l’obiettivo di identificare soluzioni concrete e condividere proposte per ottimizzare l’organizzazione della gestione del dolore cronico e del suo trattamento mediante gruppi di lavoro e sessioni educazionali. Questo documento illustra i punti salienti dell’Evento e ne discute le implicazioni per la pratica clinica.

Keywords: capsaicina, dolore neuropatico, dolore nocicettivo, funzionalità, lidocaina, percorso del paziente, qualità della vita, tapentadolo.

Citation: Natale MR, Degirolamo C, Perversi F, Varrassi G. Ridisegnare il percorso di cura e gli obiettivi del trattamento nel paziente con dolore cronico: spunti emersi dall’Evento Science of Relief 2.0 [article in Italian]. Drugs Context. 2021;10:2021-6-4.

Contributions: Il presente documento raccoglie e discute le riflessioni emerse durante i gruppi di lavoro e il simposio scientifico, nell’ambito dell’Evento Science of Relief 2.0, organizzato da Grünenthal Italia e svoltosi tra Ottobre e Novembre 2020. Il presente documento è stato elaborato a partire dalle letture degli Autori durante l’Evento.

This document collects and discusses the reflections emerged during the working groups and the scientific symposium within the Science of Relief 2.0 Event, organized by Grünenthal Italia and held between October and November 2020. This document was prepared from the authors’ readings during the event.

Disclosure and potential conflicts of interest: Gli Autori non dichiarano alcun conflitto di interesse, ad eccezione di un contributo non condizionante di Grünenthal Italia. Il supporto editoriale è stato fornito da Aashni Shah, di Polistudium (Milan, Italy), e finanziato da Grünenthal Italia Srl.

The authors declare no conflict of interest, with the exception of a non-conditioning contribution from Grünenthal Italia. Editorial support was provided by Aashni Shah, Polistudium (Milan, Italy), and financed by Grünenthal Italia Srl. The International Committee of Medical Journal Editors (ICMJE) Potential Conflicts of Interests form for the authors is available for download at:

Acknowledgements: The authors wish to acknowledge all the participants who took part in the Science of Relief 2.0 Event.

Funding declaration: The authors declare no conflict of interest, with the exception of a non-conditioning contribution by Grünenthal Italia. Editorial support was provided by Grünenthal Italia.

Copyright: Copyright © 2021 Natale MR, Degirolamo C, Perversi F, Varrassi G. Published by Drugs in Context under Creative Commons License Deed CC BY NC ND 4.0 which allows anyone to copy, distribute, and transmit the article provided it is properly attributed in the manner specified below. No commercial use without permission.

Correct attribution: Copyright © 2021 Natale MR, Degirolamo C, Perversi F, Varrassi G. Published by Drugs in Context under Creative Commons License Deed CC BY NC ND 4.0.

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Correspondence: Giustino Varrassi, Paolo Procacci Foundation, Rome, Italy. Email:

Provenance: Submitted; internally reviewed.

Submitted: 6 May 2021; Accepted: 17 June 2021; Publication date: 11 August 2021.

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