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Middle & long latency somatosensory evoked potentials after painful laser stimulation in patients with fibromyalgia (FM) syndrome

  [ 37 votes ]   [ Discuss This Article ]
www.ProHealth.com • March 6, 1996


Ten female patients with fibromyalgia syndrome (FS) were
investigated with laser evoked potentials (LEPs) after hand
stimulations and compared with 10 female pain-free and
age-matched control patients. FS patients exhibited
significantly lower heat pain thresholds than controls (P <
0.05) and had higher amplitudes of LEP components N170 (P <
0.01) and P390 (P < 0.05) in response to intensities of 20 W
(beam diameter 5 mm, duration 20 msec, wavelength 10.6
microns). N170 additionally appeared with a broader
distribution over bilateral central, vertex and fronto-central
leads which contrasted to the control group and studies in
healthy subjects where N170 was much more restricted to
central and midtemporal positions contralateral to the
stimulated hand.

Auditory stimuli interspersed between laser
impulses that served to announce subjects to rate the
perceived pain elicited auditory evoked potentials that were
not different between groups indicating no differences of
general vigilance level to account for observed LEP effects.

P390 amplitude enhancement might indicate greater attention
and cognitive processing of nociceptive stimuli in FS
subjects. Effects upon N170 rather point to exogenous factors
like peripheral and spinal sensitization or reduced cortical
or subcortical inhibition of nociception.

Lorenz J, Grasedyck K, Bromm B




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