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[Morphologic study of trigger points]

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Tags: muscle pain, odd, muscle, pain problems

Two articles on PainSci cite Reitinger 1996: (1) The Complete Guide to Trigger Points & Myofascial Pain(2) The Trigger Point Identity Crisis

PainSci notes on Reitinger 1996:

In the first study of its kind in humans, Reitinger et al. perform biopsies of still-palpable nodules (presumed to be trigger points) in the gluteus medius muscle in fresh cadavers — an unusual and difficult thing to accomplish. Rigor mortis would not have set in to any significant degree in fresh cadavers.

Microscopic cross-sections of the tissue showed enlarged and darkly-staining muscle fibers — swollen fibers with higher oxidative capacity (more mitochondria, basically) — compared to elsewhere in the muscle. Their diameters were probably larger because they were contracted: electron microscopy showed maximally contracted sarcomeres, indicated by wide A-bands, absent I-bands, and close Z-bands.

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