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bibliography * The PainScience Bibliography contains plain language summaries of thousands of scientific papers and others sources, like a specialized blog. This page is about a single scientific paper in the bibliography, Simons 2008.

New Views of Myofascial Trigger Points: Etiology and Diagnosis

updated
Simons DG. New Views of Myofascial Trigger Points: Etiology and Diagnosis. Archives of Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation. 2008 Jan;89(1):157–159. PubMed #18164347.
Tags: muscle pain, etiology, diagnosis, back pain, neck, chronic pain, muscle, pain problems, pro, spine, head/neck

PainSci summary of Simons 2008?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.

Excellent summary (and some criticism) of two new papers in the same issue that “can reduce some of the controversy surrounding myofascial trigger point”: “Biochemicals associated with pain and inflammation are elevated in sites near to and remote from active myofascial trigger points” and “Identification and quantification of myofascial taut bands with magnetic resonance elastography” (which was followed up by a more detailed study the next year, see Chen 2008). He wrote that MRE “may open a whole new chapter in the centuries-old search for a convincing demonstration of the cause of MTP symptoms.”

~ Paul Ingraham

original abstract

Two studies appearing in Archives, one by Shah and colleagues and another one by Chen and colleagues, present groundbreaking findings that can reduce some of the controversy surrounding myofascial trigger points (MTPs). Both author groups recognize the ubiquity of this disease and the importance to patients of health care professionals becoming better acquainted with the cause and identification of MTPs. The integrated hypothesis is the most credible and most complete proposed etiology of MTPs. However, the feedback loop suggested in this hypothesis has a few weak links, and studies by Shah and colleagues in particular supply a solid link for one of them. The feedback loop connects the hypothesized energy crisis with the milieu changes responsible for noxious stimulation of local nociceptors that causes the local and referred pain of MTPs. Shah’s reports quantify the presence of not just 1 noxious stimulant but 11 of them with outstanding concentrations of immune system histochemicals. The results also strongly place a solid histochemical base under the important clinical distinction between active and latent MTPs. The study by Chen on the use of magnetic resonance elastography (MRE) imaging of the taut band of an MTP in an upper trapezius muscle may open a whole new chapter in the centuries-old search for a convincing demonstration of the cause of MTP symptoms. MRE is a modification of existing magnetic resonance imaging equipment, and it images stress produced by adjacent tissues with different degrees of tension. This report seems to present an MRE image of the taut band that shows the chevron signature of the increased tension of the taut band compared with surrounding tissues.

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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.