Treatment of diabetic neuropathy is still carried out by providing symptomatic therapy, which only improves ± 50% of the total symptoms felt by patients, but does not tackle the underlying causes of the disease. Astaxanthin is a potent antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and anti-diabetic carotenoid that could be an additional treatment option. We aimed to measure the effectiveness of administering astaxanthin as an additional therapy to improve the impact of pain and discomfort experienced daily by diabetes mellitus patients with painful diabetic neuropathy. We conducted a randomized experimental study with an open label design of 36 patients who had been diagnosed with painful diabetic neuropathy. The control group was treated with standard treatment for painful diabetic neuropathy, and the experimental group was given both standard and additional therapy of astaxanthin at a dose of 6 mg once per day. The impact of pain was assessed using the Brief Pain Inventory (BPI) before administering astaxanthin and on the 4th and 8th weeks after administering astaxanthin. The administration of therapy showed a significant improvement in the impact of pain experienced daily by patients on both treatment groups (p<0.05). However, the mean BPI score of the control and the experimental groups did not differ significantly each week (p>0.05). There is a significant improvement in the BPI of patients with painful diabetic neuropathy who were given additional treatment (add on) of astaxanthin compared to patients who were only given standard treatment for painful diabetic neuropathy.


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