Study Reveals Vicious Cycle Of Chronic/Spontaneous Pain And Sleep Loss

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Injury Description, Date, extent, surgical intervention etc: Date of Injury: 12/15/02

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Study Reveals Vicious Cycle Of Chronic/Spontaneous Pain And Sleep Loss

Post by Christopher » Thu Apr 05, 2007 1:14 am

This is old news to me, but may be useful to someone else. This is the reason I got tested for sleep APNEA and had surgery a few months ago. Sleep is still screwy but better, supposed to test again after 6 months.


Sleep Study Reveals Vicious Cycle Of Chronic/Spontaneous Pain And Sleep Loss

April 3, 2007 12:44 p.m. EST

Patricia Shehan - All Headline News Staff Writer
Baltimore, MD (AHN) - A recent sleep study indicates that a vicious cycle occurs with interrupted sleep causing chronic and spontaneous pain to cycle with sleep loss.

The John Hopkins study was conducted on 32 healthy young women for seven nights of sleep. The women were broken down into three groups.

One group was awakened by force every hour of the night to find the effects of interrupted sleep and associated chronic and spontaneous pain. Another group lost the same amount of sleep time by being forced to delay their bedtimes. The third group, which was assigned as the control group, was left to sleep undisturbed.

Further testing and outcome measurements were obtained from these three groups for the researchers to provide analytical analysis of their results.

The study was published in the April issue of "Sleep."

According to Dr. Smith and colleagues, who wrote the article reporting the study, "Pain not only disrupts sleep, but disrupted sleep amplifies pain. There is evidence emerging that insomnia predicts the development of widespread pain in individuals with regional pain. ... Sleep fragmentation increases risk and/or exacerbates chronic pain."

"While sleep deprivation had no effect on pain thresholds, during partial sleep deprivation the forced awakening group demonstrated a significant loss of pain inhibition and an increase in spontaneous pain; neither of the other two groups showed changes in pain inhibition or spontaneous pain during partial sleep deprivation," stated the authors in their article.

"Somewhat surprisingly, although both partial sleep deprivation groups showed comparable increases in daytime sleepiness and spontaneous somatic symptoms after 36 hours of total sleep deprivation, neither group showed abnormal diffuse noxious inhibitory controls or pressure pain thresholds following total sleep deprivation," wrote the authors in the reported article.

The researchers also added that, "The forced-awakening group did, however, trend toward continued reductions in diffuse noxious [or harmful] inhibitory controls during total sleep deprivation, which might have proven to be significant with a larger sample size."

The authors note that their study was limited and should be conducted on men and older adults as well to further validate their findings.

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