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Pain relief by touch: a quantitative approach.

Mancini, F; Nash, T; Iannetti, GD; Haggard, P; (2014) Pain relief by touch: a quantitative approach. Pain , 155 (3) pp. 635-642. 10.1016/j.pain.2013.12.024. Green open access

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Abstract

Pain relief by touch has been studied for decades in pain neuroscience. Human perceptual studies revealed analgesic effects of segmental tactile stimulation, as compared to extra-segmental touch. However, the spatial organization of touch-pain interactions within a single human dermatome has not been investigated yet. In two experiments, we tested whether, how, and where within a dermatome touch modulates the perception of laser-evoked pain. We measured pain perception using intensity ratings, qualitative descriptors, and signal detection measures of sensitivity and response bias. Touch concurrent with laser pulses produced a significant analgesia, and reduced the sensitivity in detecting the energy of laser stimulation, implying a functional loss of information within the ascending Aδ pathway. Touch also produced a bias to judge laser stimuli as less painful. This bias decreased linearly when the distance between the laser and tactile stimuli increased. Thus, our study provides evidence for a spatial organization of intra-segmental touch-pain interactions.

Type: Article
Title: Pain relief by touch: a quantitative approach.
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1016/j.pain.2013.12.024
Publisher version: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.pain.2013.12.024
Additional information: ©� 2014 The Authors. Published by Elsevier B.V. on behalf of International Association for the Study of Pain. This is an open access article under the CC BY license (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/).
Keywords: Analgesia, Pain, Relief, Signal detection theory, Space, Touch
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences > Div of Psychology and Lang Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences > Div of Psychology and Lang Sciences > Institute of Cognitive Neuroscience
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Life Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Life Sciences > Div of Biosciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Life Sciences > Div of Biosciences > Neuro, Physiology and Pharmacology
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/1418219
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