Pain study points to a mirror image

Discussion in 'Current Events' started by wdlove, Apr 2, 2004.

  1. wdlove macrumors P6


    Oct 20, 2002
    For more than a century, doctors have reported cases of a mysterious phenomenon: When a patient's arm or leg was injured, the opposite limb would sometimes feel chronic pain, as well.

    Now, Massachusets General Hospital research on rats suggests that such opposite-limb symptoms may stem from a previously unrecognized connection of pinpoint accuracy between the nerves on one side of the body and the mirror-image spot on the other side.

    The research provides the "first conclusive proof" that trauma on one side of the body can cause opposite-side nerve damage, said Dr. Gary J. Bennett of McGill University in Montreal, a leading pain specialist who was not involved in the research. "There's no precedent for this; it's a completely out-of-the-blue discovery."
  2. kylos macrumors 6502a


    Nov 8, 2002
    Sweet! Kinda makes sense, though, that each mirror region would be controlled by the same brain function (or whatever, bad on terminology, he he).
  3. wdlove thread starter macrumors P6


    Oct 20, 2002
    I don't remember taking care of any patients complaining of mirror image as described. There is referred pain, such as pain in the leg caused by a pinched nerve in the spine. Many types of referred pain are very diagnostic for physicians. The other common similarity is phantom pain. A patient has an amputation of a limb for whatever reason, but they continue to complain of pain in that limb after surgery.

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