ProHealth health Vitamin and Natural Supplement Store and Health
Home  |  Log In  |  My Account  |  View Cart  View Your ProHealth Vitamin and Supplement Shopping Cart
800-366-6056  |  Contact Us  |  Help

|
|
|
|

Trending News

List of diseases spread by deer tick grows, including malaria-like problems and potentially fatal en...

Cell-Charging Compound Gives Steady Energy to Fibromyalgia & Chronic Fatigue Patients

Lyme disease confirmed in humans from southern states

The Worst Foods to Eat When You're Sick, and the Best Ones

The Lyme disease spirochete Borrelia burgdorferi induces inflammation and apoptosis in cells from do...

Scientists Reveal Quirky Feature of Lyme Disease Bacteria

Lyme Disease Activists Take Fight to Washington D.C.

Mitochondria-Booster NIAGEN® Shows Promise in First Human Clinical Trial

In a warmer world, ticks that spread disease are arriving earlier, expanding their ranges

Can light therapy help the brain?

 
Print Page
Email Article

Chronic Pain Harms the Brain

  [ 1 vote ]   [ Discuss This Article ]
By Northwestern University • www.ProHealth.com • February 8, 2008


Feb 5 2008, CHICAGO - People with unrelenting pain don't only suffer from the non-stop sensation of throbbing pain. They also have trouble sleeping, are often depressed, anxious and even have difficulty making simple decisions.

“Stuck on Full Throttle”
In a new study, investigators at Northwestern University's Feinberg School of Medicine have identified a clue that may explain how suffering long-term pain could trigger these other pain-related symptoms.

  • Researchers found that in a healthy brain all the regions exist in a state of equilibrium. When one region is active, the others quiet down.
  • But in people with chronic pain, a front region of the cortex mostly associated with emotion "never shuts up," said Dante Chialvo http://www.chialvo.net/index.html, lead author and associate research professor of physiology at the Feinberg School. "The areas that are affected fail to deactivate when they should." They are stuck on full throttle, wearing out neurons and altering their connections to each other.

This is the first demonstration of brain disturbances in chronic pain patients not directly related to the sensation of pain. The study was published Feb. 6 in The Journal of Neuroscience. [See abstract - “Beyond Feeling: Chronic Pain Hurts the Brain, Disrupting the Default-Mode Network Dynamics.” ]

Chronic Low Back Pain vs. Pain Free Volunteers
Chialvo and colleagues used functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) to scan the brains of people with chronic low back pain and a group of pain-free volunteers while both groups were tracking a moving bar on a computer screen.

The study showed the pain sufferers performed the task well but "at the expense of using their brain differently than the pain-free group," Chialvo said.

When certain parts of the cortex were activated in the pain-free group, some others were deactivated, maintaining a cooperative equilibrium between the regions. This equilibrium also is known as the resting state network of the brain. In the chronic pain group, however, one of the nodes of this network did not quiet down as it did in the pain-free subjects.

This constant firing of neurons in these regions of the brain could cause permanent damage, Chialvo said. "We know when neurons fire too much they may change their connections with other neurons and or even die because they can't sustain high activity for so long," he explained.

"If you are a chronic pain patient, you have pain 24 hours a day, seven days a week, every minute of your life," Chialvo said. "That permanent perception of pain in your brain makes these areas in your brain continuously active. This continuous dysfunction in the equilibrium of the brain can change the wiring forever and could hurt the brain."

Chialvo hypothesized the subsequent changes in wiring "may make it harder for you to make a decision or be in a good mood to get up in the morning. It could be that pain produces depression and the other reported abnormalities because it disturbs the balance of the brain as a whole."

Study of New Pain Control Approaches "Essential"
He said his findings show it is essential to study new approaches to treat patients - not just to control their pain but also to evaluate and prevent the dysfunction that may be generated in the brain by the chronic pain.

* * * *

For more information, contact Dante R. Chialvo d-chialvo@northwestern.edu or Northwestern press representative Marla Paul Marla-Paul@northwestern.edu



Please Discuss This Article:   Post a Comment 



[ Be the first to comment on this article ]




 
Free Chronic Fatigue Syndrome and Fibromyalgia Newsletters
Subscribe to
Our FREE
Newsletter
Subscribe Now!
Receive up-to-date ME/CFS & Fibromyalgia treatment and research news
 Privacy Guaranteed  |  View Archives

Free Download: Fibro Friendly Snack Recipes

Featured Products

Optimized Curcumin Longvida® by ProHealth Optimized Curcumin Longvida® by ProHealth
Supports Cognition, Memory & Overall Health
Energy NADH™ 12.5mg Energy NADH™ 12.5mg
Improve Energy & Cognitive Function
Ultra EPA  - Fish Oil Ultra EPA - Fish Oil
Ultra concentrated source of essential fish oils
FibroSleep™ by ProHealth FibroSleep™ by ProHealth
The All-in-One Natural Sleep Aid
Ultra ATP+, Double Strength Ultra ATP+, Double Strength
Get energized with malic acid & magnesium

Natural Remedies

Secret Nutrient for Radiant Skin Secret Nutrient for Radiant Skin
Priming Your Immune System for Cold & Flu Season Priming Your Immune System for Cold & Flu Season
Soothe, Heal and Regulate Your Digestive System with Nutrient-Rich Aloe Vera Soothe, Heal and Regulate Your Digestive System with Nutrient-Rich Aloe Vera
Guarding Against the Dangers of Vitamin D Deficiency Guarding Against the Dangers of Vitamin D Deficiency
Can Glycine + Amino Acids Be the Secret to Deep, Rejuvenating Sleep? Can Glycine + Amino Acids Be the Secret to Deep, Rejuvenating Sleep?

FIBROMYALGIA RESOURCES
What is Fibromyalgia?
Fibromyalgia Diagnosis
Fibromyalgia Symptoms
Fibromyalgia Treatments
| CFS RESOURCES
What is CFS?
ME/CFS Diagnosis
ME/CFS Symptoms
ME/CFS Treatments
| FORUMS
Fibromyalgia
ME/CFS
ADVANCED MEDICAL LABS
WHOLESALE  |  AFFILIATES
GUARANTEE  |  PRIVACY
CONTACT US
LIBRARY
RSS
SITE MAP
ProHealth on Facebook  ProHealth on Twitter  ProHealth on Pinterest  ProHealth on Google Plus
Credit Card Processing