The latest medical research on Pain Medicine

The research magnet gathers the latest research from around the web, based on your specialty area. Below you will find a sample of some of the most recent articles from reputable medical journals about pain medicine gathered by our medical AI research bot.

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Correlation Between Aspects of Perceived Patient Loneliness and Spinal Cord Stimulation Outcomes.


Loneliness as a whole has been characterized as a health-related risk factor and is associated with worse outcomes after cardiac procedures. Evidence suggests that chronic pain patients are particularly vulnerable to feeling lonely. We examined the relationship between different aspects of loneliness and one-year postoperative outcomes after spinal cord stimulation (SCS) for chronic pain.

We contacted 69 patients with thoracic SCS who had participated in our prospective outcomes database with one-year follow-up to complete the validated, abbreviated UCLA Loneliness Scale (UCLA-3). We examined responses on question 9 of the Oswestry Disability Index (ODI), question 12 of the Beck Depression Inventory (BDI), and UCLA-3 due to their relevance to different aspects of loneliness. We conducted regression analyses to determine the relationship between aspects of loneliness and pain outcomes.

We identified that loss of interest in people, companionship, and feeling excluded were associated with pain outcomes. Loss of interest in people was associated with improvement in pain (NRS worst p = 0.021, r = 0.32, NRS least p = 0.004, r = 0.4; NRS right now p = 0.016, r = 0.33). Companionship and feeling excluded were also associated with pain. We examined the interface between depression and total loneliness and found that while both were related to each other, depression was not associated with pain outcomes.

This study demonstrates an association between loss of interest in people, companionship, and feeling excluded and worse postoperative pain outcomes after receiving SCS. It identifies aspects of loneliness as important factors to consider when predicting the outcomes of SCS therapy for chronic pain control.

Pragmatic approach to neuraxial anesthesia in obstetric patients with disorders of the vertebral column, spinal cord and neuromuscular system.

Regional Anesthesia and Pain Medicine

Neuraxial anesthesia provides optimal labor analgesia and cesarean delivery anesthesia. Obstetric patients with disorders of the vertebral column, ...

Role of mu-opioid receptor in nociceptive modulation in anterior cingulate cortex of rats.

Molecular Pain

Lots of studies have demonstrated that anterior cingulate cortex plays important roles in the pain perception and pain modulation. The present stud...

The effect of early procedural pain in preterm infants on the maturation of EEG and heart rate variability.


Preterm infants show a higher incidence of cognitive, social and behavioral problems, even in the absence of major medical complications during the...

Altered trigeminal pain processing on brainstem level in persistent idiopathic facial pain.


Persistent Idiopathic Facial Pain (PIFP) is a poorly understood chronic pain syndrome of the face, formerly known as atypical facial pain. It is ch...

Ubiquitin-mediated receptor degradation contributes to development of tolerance to MrgC agonist-induced pain inhibition in neuropathic rats.


Agonists to subtype C of the Mas-related G-protein-coupled receptors (MrgC) induce pain inhibition after intrathecal (i.t.) administration in roden...

Digital manikins to self-report pain on a smartphone: a systematic review of mobile apps.

Eur J Pain

Chronic pain is the leading cause of disability. Improving our understanding of pain occurrence and treatment effectiveness requires robust methods to measure pain at scale. Smartphone-based pain manikins are human-shaped figures to self-report location-specific aspects of pain on people's personal mobile devices.

We searched the main app stores to explore the current state of smartphone-based pain manikins and to formulate recommendations to guide their development in the future.

The search yielded 3,938 apps. Twenty-eight incorporated a pain manikin and were included in the analysis. For all apps, it was unclear whether they had been tested and had end-user involvement in the development. Pain intensity and quality could be recorded in 28 and 13 apps, respectively, but this was location-specific in only 11 and four. Most manikins had two or more views (n=21) and enabled users to shade or select body areas to record pain location (n=17). Seven apps allowed personalising the manikin appearance. Twelve apps calculated at least one metric to summarise manikin reports quantitatively. Twenty-two apps had an archive of historical manikin reports; only eight offered feedback summarising manikin reports over time.

Several publically available apps incorporated a manikin for pain reporting, but only few enabled recording of location-specific pain aspects, calculating manikin-derived quantitative scores, or generating summary feedback. For smartphone-based manikins to become adopted more widely, future developments should harness manikins' digital nature and include robust validation studies. Involving end users in the development may increase manikins' acceptability as a tool to self-report pain.

Analgesia and anesthesia using the pericapsular nerve group block in hip surgery and hip fracture: a scoping review.

Regional Anesthesia and Pain Medicine

Pericapsular nerve group (PENG) block is a novel regional analgesia technique to reduce pain after hip surgery and hip fractures. This review was conducted to summarize current literature.

A scoping review was carried out using the Joanna Briggs Institute framework. All articles describing the use of PENG block as a regional analgesia and/or anesthesia technique for hip pain were considered eligible for inclusion. Ovid Medline, Embase, CINAHL, PubMed and Google Scholar were searched. Adult and pediatric studies were included. Excluded were articles not available in English language, not available in full-text, related to non-orthopedic indications such as soft tissue surgery, and pelvic or femoral shaft fractures.

Database searches identified 345 articles, 20 of which could be included in the current review, with a combined patient number of 74. Included articles comprised case reports and case series only, describing 1 to 10 patients. In all studies, PENG block was described to provide sufficient analgesia or anesthesia. Transient motor side effects occurred only when the local anesthetic was deposited in an unintended location (n=2).

Current evidence of using PENG block for hip surgery or hip pain is limited to case reports and case series only. PENG block is a promising regional analgesia technique as an alternative to other regional nerve blocks such as femoral nerve block or iliac fascia nerve block. Observational and experimental studies are required to determine the effectiveness, efficacy and safety of the PENG block.

Identifying participants with knee osteoarthritis likely to benefit from physical therapy education and exercise: a hypothesis-generating study.

Eur J Pain

The purpose of this investigation was to undertake a hypothesis-generating study to identify candidate variables that characterize people with knee osteoarthritis who are most likely to experience a positive response to exercise.

One hundred fifty participants with knee osteoarthritis participated in this observational, longitudinal study. All participants received a standard exercise intervention that consisted of 20-minute sessions two to three times a week for three months. The classification and regression tree methodology (CART) was used to develop prediction of positive clinical outcome. Positive pain and disability outcomes (dependent variables) were defined as an improvement in pain intensity by >50% or an improvement of five or more on the Oxford knee score, respectively. The predictor variables considered included age, sex, body mass index, knee osteoarthritis severity (Kellgren/Lawrence grade), pain duration, use of medication, range of knee motion, pain catastrophising, self-efficacy and knee self-perception.

Fifty-five participants (36.6%) were classified as responders for pain intensity and 36.6% were classified as responders for disability. The CART model identified impairments in knee self-perception and knee osteoarthritis severity as the discriminators for pain intensity reduction following exercise. No variables predicted reduction of disability level following exercise.

Such findings suggest that both body perception and osteoarthritis severity may play a role in treatment outcome with exercise. It also raises the possibility that those with higher levels of disrupted body perception may need additional treatment targeted at restoring body perception prior to undertaking exercise.

Treatment of Fecal Incontinence With a Rechargeable Sacral Neuromodulation System: Efficacy, Clinical Outcome, and Ease of Use-Six-Month Follow-Up.


Sacral neuromodulation is an effective treatment for fecal incontinence (FI) after conservative treatments have failed. A new rechargeable sacral neuromodulation system (r-SNM) includes a rechargeable implantable neurostimulator (INS). No data is available of the use of this technology in patients with fecal incontinence.

Fifteen patients with FI were implanted with the Axonics rechargeable SNM system in a single-stage implant procedure and prospectively followed. Primary outcome was fecal incontinence episodes at four weeks and six months measured with stools diary. Success was defined as at least 50% improvement of fecal incontinence episodes. Additionally, quality of life and ease of use were evaluated.

At four weeks, 13 participants (87%) were test responders based on ≥50% reduction in FI episodes as documented on their bowel diary. Weekly FI episodes decreased from a median (25%-75% range) of 8 (5.8-20.3) at baseline to a median of 1.5 (0.4-4.5) at four weeks (p = 0.001), and 1.5 (0-2.6) at six months (p = 0.001), corresponding to 75% and 79% reduction in weekly FI episodes. Of the 13 subjects having ≥50% reduction in FI episodes at four weeks, 12 (PP = 92%) were therapy responders at six months. There were no unanticipated device or procedure-related adverse events. Mean time to recharge the system was 37 ± 3 min once or twice per week. All patients were moderately or very satisfied with the system and its effect.

The r-SNM system provides safe and effective therapy in patients with FI at six months.

Effectiveness of onabotulinumtoxinA (BOTOX) in pediatric patients experiencing migraines: a randomized, double-blinded, placebo-controlled crossover study in the pediatric pain population.

Regional Anesthesia and Pain Medicine


After obtaining approval by the appropriate local (HS# 2016-3108) and federal institutions, the principal investigator enrolled candidates aged 8 to 17 years old diagnosed with chronic migraines (at least 6 months), and 15 or more headache days in a 4-week baseline period. This randomized control trial consisted of two phases: double-blind and open-label for the first two and last two sets of treatments, respectively. Subjects were randomly assigned to receive a treatment protocol-155 units at 31 injection sites-in 3-month intervals and follow-up visits every 6 weeks. Non-parametric testing (Wilcoxon signed-rank test) was performed using widely available open-source statistical software ('R').

From February 2017 to November 2018, 17 subjects presented for a screening visit; 15 met eligibility criteria. Subjects that received OBTA reported a statistically significant decrease from the following baseline values compared with placebo 6-week post-treatment compared with placebo: frequency (20 (7 to 17) vs 28 (23 to 28); p=0.038), intensity (5 (3 to 7) vs 7 (5 to 9); p=0.047), and PedMIDAS (Pediatric Migraine Disability Score) (3 (2 to 4) vs 4 (4 to 4); p=0.047). There was no statistically significant difference in the duration (10 (2 to 24) vs 24 (4 to 24); p=0.148) of migraines between the two groups.

OnabotulinumtoxinA showed a statistically significant decrease in frequency and intensity of migraines compared with placebo. No adverse effects or serious adverse events related to the use of OBTA were reported. In the future, we aim to evaluate the specific nature of migraines, for example, quality/location of pain presented during an initial consult to predict the likelihood of OBTA being a truly effective modality of pain management for pediatric migraineurs.

Transmuscular quadratus lumborum block reduces opioid consumption and prolongs time to first opioid demand after laparoscopic nephrectomy.

Regional Anesthesia and Pain Medicine


Fifty patients were included in this single-center study. All patients were scheduled for elective hand-assisted or robotic laparoscopic nephrectomy under general anesthesia. Preoperatively, patients were randomly allocated to TQL block bilaterally with ropivacaine 60 mL 0.375% or 60 mL saline and all patients received standard multimodal analgesia and intravenous patient-controlled analgesia. Primary outcome was postoperative oral morphine equivalent (OME) consumption 0-12 hours. Secondary outcomes were postoperative OME consumption up to 24 hours, pain scores, time to first opioid, nausea/vomiting, time to first ambulation and hospital length of stay (LOS).

Mean (95% CI) OME consumption was significantly lower in the intervention group at 12 hours after surgery 50 (28.5 to 71.5) mg versus control 87.5 (62.7 to 112.3) mg, p=0.02. At 24 hours, 69.4 (43.2 to 95.5) mg versus 127 (96.7 to 158.6) mg, p<0.01. Time to first opioid was significantly prolonged in the intervention group median (IQR) 4.4 (2.8-17.6) hours compared with 0.3 (0.1-1.0) hours in the control group, p<0.001. No significant intergroup differences were recorded for time to first ambulation, pain scores, nausea/vomiting nor for LOS.

Preoperative bilateral TQL block significantly reduced postoperative opioid consumption by 43% and significantly prolonged time to first opioid.