Adjustments Lower Sensitivity To Pain

Spinal manipulative therapy (SMT) influence pain response in healthy people, according to research conducted at the University of Florida in Gainesville.

As part of the experiment 90 healthy volunteers “were randomly assigned to receive one of three interventions (SMT, exercise, or rest) to the upper thoracic spine.”

Before and after the intervention tested pain sensitivity in cervical and lumbar areas via thermal pain responses. Specifically, they tested for changes in temporal sensory summation (TSS), which is the arousal of impulses carried by the same sensory neuron.

Findings showed that participants who received SMT had greater reductions in TSS, compared with people in the exercise and rest groups.

This present study indicates thoracic SMT that reduces TSS in healthy subjects,” conclude the study’s authors. These findings extend our previous work in healthy and clinical subjects by indicating change in the nocioceptive afferent system occurred caudal to the region of SMT application. However, the duration of reduction in TSS is unknown, and more work needs to be completed in clinical populations to confirm the relevance of these findings.”

Spine Journal – April 2, 2011;Epub.

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