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Neurochirurgie. 2015 Mar;61 Suppl 1:S35-44. doi: 10.1016/j.neuchi.2014.10.104. Epub 2014 Nov 20.

Pathophysiological characterisation of back pain generators in failed back surgery syndrome (part B).

Author information

1
Department of Neurosurgery, Poitiers University Hospital, 86021 Poitiers cedex, France; N3Lab: Neuromodulation & Neural Networks, Poitiers University Hospital, 86021 Poitiers cedex, France; Inserm CIC 802, Poitiers, 86021 Poitiers cedex, France. Electronic address: philipperigoard@yahoo.fr.
2
Department of Neurosurgery, Lille University Hospital, 59037 Lille cedex, France.
3
Department of Neurosurgery, Poitiers University Hospital, 86021 Poitiers cedex, France; N3Lab: Neuromodulation & Neural Networks, Poitiers University Hospital, 86021 Poitiers cedex, France.
4
Department of Neurosurgery, Lyon University hospital, 69677 Lyon cedex, France; Laboratory of Anatomy, Faculty of Medicine, 69677 Lyon cedex, France.

Abstract

INTRODUCTION:

Low back surgery, including as many type of spine procedures as the multitude of failed back surgery syndrome (FBSS) etiologies, is not always the answer for patients with chronic low back pain. Paradoxically, although a patient is considered to present FBSS because he has already undergone spinal surgery, any new symptom in the back or deterioration of back pain must not be immediately attributed to FBSS, but could be related to another cause independently of the initial mechanical problem. The aim of this paper is to extensively review the potential back pain generators in FBSS patients and to discuss their respective roles and interactions in back pain pathophysiology.

METHODS:

Literature searches included an exhaustive review of 643 references and 74 book chapters updated by searching the major electronic databases from 1930 to August 2013.

RESULTS:

Nociceptive fibres innervating any of the back anatomical structures can all play a part in the pathogenesis of the low back pain component in FBSS. The main spinal pain generators are not only myofascial syndrome or muscle spasm but also the facets, the disc complex or a sagittal imbalance and should therefore be carefully reviewed. Only after these steps and appropriate imaging, would it be justified to irremediably diagnose the patient with a refractory chronic condition, requiring no further spine surgery and to propose "palliative" pain treatment options.

CONCLUSION:

Clinical investigations of the low back pain component in FBSS patients should be based on meticulous dissection of all potential triggers that could be a source of the nociceptive pain characteristics and possibly amenable to further aetiological treatment. Clinicians should therefore refine pain management strategies to ensure that the chronic nature of the pain becomes the guiding principle for multidisciplinary assessment.

KEYWORDS:

Aetiologic treatment; Approche muti-disciplinaire; Back pain generators; Failed back surgery syndrome; Générateurs de lombalgies; Lombalgies; Lombo-radiculalgies postopératoires; Low back pain; Multidisciplinary management; Pathophysiology; Physiopathologie; Traitement étiologique

PMID:
25456443
DOI:
10.1016/j.neuchi.2014.10.104
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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