Corticomotor depression is associated with higher pain severity in the transition to sustained pain : A longitudinal exploratory study of individual differences

Journal article


Seminowicz, David A., Thapa Rana, Tribikram and Schabrun, Siobhan M.. (2019). Corticomotor depression is associated with higher pain severity in the transition to sustained pain : A longitudinal exploratory study of individual differences. Journal of Pain. 20(12), pp. 1498-1506. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jpain.2019.06.005
AuthorsSeminowicz, David A., Thapa Rana, Tribikram and Schabrun, Siobhan M.
Abstract

Aberrant motor cortex plasticity is hypothesized to contribute to chronic musculoskeletal pain, but evidence is limited. Critically, studies have not considered individual differences in motor plasticity or how this relates to pain susceptibility. Here we examined the relationship between corticomotor excitability and an individual's susceptibility to pain as pain developed, was sustained and resolved over 21 days. Nerve growth factor was injected into the right extensor carpi radialis brevis muscle of 20 healthy individuals on day 0, 2, and 4. Corticomotor excitability, pressure pain thresholds and performance on a cognitive conflict task were examined longitudinally (day 0, 2, 4, 6, and 14). Pain and disability were assessed on each alternate day (1,3…21). Two patterns of motor plasticity were observed in response to pain––corticomotor depression or corticomotor facilitation (P = .009). Individuals who displayed corticomotor depression experienced greater pain (P = .027), and had worse cognitive task performance (P = .038), than those who displayed facilitation. Pressure pain thresholds were reduced to a similar magnitude in both groups. Corticomotor depression in the early stage of pain could indicate a higher susceptibility to pain. Further work is required to determine whether corticomotor depression is a marker of pain susceptibility in musculoskeletal conditions.

Keywordsmotor cortex plasticity; musculoskeletal pain; pain susceptibility; transcranial magnetic stimulation
Year2019
JournalJournal of Pain
Journal citation20 (12), pp. 1498-1506
PublisherElsevier
ISSN1526-5900
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jpain.2019.06.005
Scopus EID2-s2.0-85068550129
Research or scholarlyResearch
Page range1498-1506
FunderNational Health and Medical Research Council
National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health
Publisher's version
License
All rights reserved
File Access Level
Controlled
Output statusPublished
Publication dates
Online13 Jun 2019
Publication process dates
Accepted01 Jun 2019
Deposited22 Aug 2022
Grant ID1142145
1105040
R01AT007176
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