PainSci summary of Fernández-de-Las-Peñas 2007?This page is one of thousands in the PainScience.com bibliography. It is not a general article: it is focused on a single scientific paper, and it may provide only just enough context for the summary to make sense. Links to other papers and more general information are provided at the bottom of the page, as often as possible. ★★★☆☆?3-star ratings are for typical studies with no more (or less) than the usual common problems. Ratings are a highly subjective opinion, and subject to revision at any time. If you think this paper has been incorrectly rated, please let me know.
This review of the scientific literature, unfortunately, has little scientific literature to review: not much research has been done on the relationship between trigger points and neck pain, and — as is so often the case in musculoskeletal health care — “additional studies are needed.” However, the authors suggest that “it seems that the pain profile of neck and head syndromes may be provoked referred pain from TrPs in the posterior cervical, head, and shoulder muscles” and that there is some evidence “that both tension headache and migraine are associated with referred pain from trigger points.”
~ Paul Ingraham
original abstract†Abstracts here may not perfectly match originals, for a variety of technical and practical reasons. Some abstacts are truncated for my purposes here, if they are particularly long-winded and unhelpful. I occasionally add clarifying notes. And I make some minor corrections.
Neck and head pain syndromes are common problems seen in clinical practice. Pain features of commonly designated idiopathic neck pain and some primary headaches (ie, tension-type headache or migraine) fit the descriptions of referred pain originating in muscle trigger points (TrPs). This article discusses the scientific evidence supporting the role of muscle TrPs in chronic musculo-skeletal disorders of the neck and head. The relevance of referred pain elicited by muscle TrPs in patients with neck pain has been investigated in few studies. Some authors found that both muscle TrPs in neck-shoulder muscles and cervical joint dysfunctions contribute at the same time to neck pain perception. Furthermore, it seems that referred pain originated in muscle TrPs could also contribute to neck symptoms perceived by subjects after a rear-end crash. In addition, several recent studies reported that both TTH and migraine are associated with referred pain from TrPs in the suboccipital, upper trapezius, sternocleidomastoid, temporalis, or superior oblique muscles. Referred pain elicited by active TrPs mimics the pain areas observed during head pain attacks in these primary headaches. Based on available data, it seems that the pain profile of neck and head syndromes may be provoked referred pain from TrPs in the posterior cervical, head, and shoulder muscles. Additional studies are needed to delineate more information on the relation between muscle TrPs and musculoskeletal pain syndromes of the head and neck.
- “Myofascial trigger points in subjects presenting with mechanical neck pain: A blinded, controlled study,” an article in Manual Therapy, 2007.
- “Myofascial trigger points and their relationship to headache clinical parameters in chronic tension-type headache,” an article in Headache, 2006.
- “Myofascial trigger points in cluster headache patients: a case series,” an article in Head & Face Medicine, 2008.
- “Myofascial trigger points in migraine and tension-type headache,” an article in J Headache Pain, 2018.
These two articles on PainScience.com cite Fernández-de-Las-Peñas 2007 as a source:
- PS Complete Guide to Headaches — Detailed, readable self-help for tension headaches and other common musculoskeletal headaches
- PS Save Yourself from Neck Pain! — A complete guide to chronic neck pain and the disturbing sensation of a “crick”
This page is part of the PainScience BIBLIOGRAPHY, which contains plain language summaries of thousands of scientific papers & others sources. It’s like a highly specialized blog. A few highlights:
- A Bayesian model-averaged meta-analysis of the power pose effect with informed and default priors: the case of felt power. Gronau 2017 Comprehensive Results in Social Psychology.
- The neck and headaches. Bogduk 2014 Neurol Clin.
- Agreement of self-reported items and clinically assessed nerve root involvement (or sciatica) in a primary care setting. Konstantinou 2012 Eur Spine J.
- Effect of NSAIDs on Recovery From Acute Skeletal Muscle Injury: A Systematic Review and Meta-analysis. Morelli 2017 Am J Sports Med.
- Association of Spinal Manipulative Therapy With Clinical Benefit and Harm for Acute Low Back Pain: Systematic Review and Meta-analysis. Paige 2017 JAMA.