An Open-Label Functionality, Safety and Efficacy Study in Patients Undergoing Elective Unilateral Knee Replacement


AcelRx Pharmaceuticals

Status and phase

Phase 2


Pain, Postoperative


Drug: Sufentanil NanoTab PCA System/15 mcg

Study type


Funder types




Details and patient eligibility


This study is being performed to evaluate the functionality of a device (Sufentanil NanoTab® PCA System) that has been developed for use by patients to self-administer the ARX-F01 pain medication (Sufentanil NanoTab 15 mcg) for the treatment of post-operative pain after undergoing knee replacement surgery. Another goal of this study is to assess the safety and effectiveness of this non-invasive, sublingual route of administration of ARX-F01 in decreasing the amount of pain that a patient experiences following knee replacement surgery.


30 patients




45 to 80 years old


Accepts Healthy Volunteers

Inclusion criteria

  1. Male or female patients between 45 and 80 years of age.
  2. Patient is scheduled for an elective unilateral, unicondylar, bi- or tri-compartmental, cemented or uncemented knee replacement under general or spinal anesthesia that does not include use of an intrathecal opioid.
  3. Patient must be classified as American Society of Anesthesiologists (ASA) class I - III.
  4. Patient must have a Body Mass Index (BMI) between 18 and 39, inclusively.
  5. Female patients of childbearing potential must be using an effective method of birth control from the screening visit through the end of study. Acceptable methods of birth control include oral or transdermal contraceptives, condom, spermicidal foam, intrauterine device (IUD), progestin implant or injection, abstinence, vaginal ring, or sterilization of partner. The reason for non-childbearing potential, such as bilateral tubal ligation, bilateral oophorectomy, hysterectomy, or postmenopausal for ≥1 year, must be specified in the patient's CRF.
  6. The patient must be willing and able to understand the study procedures and the use of pain scales, and to communicate meaningfully with the study personnel.
  7. The patient must have the manual dexterity to handle the Sufentnail NanoTab PCA System and be able to follow directions for its use.
  8. The patient must provide written informed consent and sign the Informed Consent approved by the Institutional Review Board (IRB).

Exclusion criteria

  1. Patient has previously undergone a knee replacement of the same knee.
  2. A passive range-of-motion (PRM) will be used before the 12-hour study period is complete.
  3. Patient has previously not responded to opioid analgesics for treatment of pain.
  4. Patient is currently taking or has taken an opioid for more than 30 consecutive days of daily use at a daily dose equivalent of greater than 15 mg morphine within the past three months prior to surgery (e.g. more than 3 doses per day of Vicodin®, Norco®, Lortab® with 5 mg hydrocodone per tablet).
  5. Patient has an allergy or hypersensitivity to opioids.
  6. Patient is taking monoamine oxidase inhibitors (MAOIs), or has taken MAOIs within 14 days prior to enrolling in the study.
  7. Patient currently has sleep apnea that has been documented by a sleep laboratory study.
  8. Patient has any screening laboratory test value outside the laboratory normal range which is considered clinically significant by the Investigator.
  9. Patient is a woman who is pregnant or lactating.
  10. Patient has psychiatric disease or encephalopathy severe enough to prevent patient from providing reliable study documentation.
  11. Patient, in the Investigator's judgment, does not have adequate ability to read and understand English.
  12. Patient has a medical condition that, in the Investigator's opinion, could adversely impact the patient's participation or safety, conduct of the study, or interfere with the pain assessments, including fracture or active infection.
  13. Patient has clinically significant renal or liver impairment which could affect metabolism or clearance of sufentanil.
  14. Patient has a painful physical condition other than knee arthritis that, in the opinion of the Investigator, may confound post-operative pain assessments.
  15. Patient has a history of drug, prescription medicine, or alcohol abuse within the past 2 years or a positive drug screen test for cocaine, amphetamines, barbiturates, phencyclidine, or methadone at screening.
  16. Patient is receiving oxygen therapy at the time of screening.
  17. Patient participated in a clinical trial of an investigational drug or device within 30 days of screening visit or is scheduled to receive an investigational product other than the Sufentanil NanoTab PCA System while participating in this study.

Exclusion Criteria Prior to Treatment Initiation:

  1. Patient has a respiratory rate that is less than 8 breaths per minute or greater than 24 breaths per minute.
  2. Patient has arterial oxygen saturation by pulse oximetry (SpO2) of less than 90% with supplemental oxygen.
  3. Patient is not able to answer questions and follow commands.
  4. Patient has vomiting that is not responsive to standard treatment.
  5. The surgical procedure from incision to closure lasted more than 3 hours.
  6. There have been any deviations from the surgical or anesthetic protocols as specified in Section

Trial design

Primary purpose




Interventional model

Single Group Assignment


None (Open label)

30 participants in 1 patient group

Sufentanil NanoTab PCA System/15 mcg
Experimental group
Drug: Sufentanil NanoTab PCA System/15 mcg

Trial contacts and locations



Data sourced from

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