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Neurosci Lett. 2002 Dec 25;335(2):119-23.

Changes in human regional cerebral blood flow following hypertonic saline induced experimental muscle pain: a positron emission tomography study.

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  • 1Center for Musculoskeletal Research, Umeå University and National Institute for Working Life, Box 7654, Petrus Laestadius väg, S907 13, Umeå, Sweden.


A positron emission tomography imaging study was performed on 16 healthy volunteers to reveal changes in cortical activation during acute muscle pain induced by intra-muscular injection of hypertonic saline into the left triceps brachii muscle. Changes in regional cerebral blood flow (rCBF) were measured with the use of [(15)O] labelled water during 'Rest1', 'Needle' (insertion of a needle without injection), 'Rest2' and 'Pain' conditions. Differences in rCBF were found in the comparison of Pain and Needle, and Pain and Rest2 conditions, revealing activation of the contralateral insula and putamen. The results are discussed with respect to possible differences in brain processing of muscle and cutaneous noxious inputs.

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