Author(s): Mertens P, Blond S, David R, Rigoard P
Abstract Share this page
Abstract INTRODUCTION: The treatment of Failed Back Surgery Syndrome (FBSS) remains a challenge for pain medicine due to the complexity in the interactions between  a residual mechanical pain after surgery and,  a progressive transition into chronic pain involving central nervous system plasticity and molecular reorganization. The aim of this paper is to provide a fundamental overview of the pain pathway supporting the nociceptive component of the back pain. METHODS: Literature searches included an exhaustive review of 643 references and 74 book chapters updated by searching the major electronic databases from 1930 to August 2013. RESULTS: Pain input is gathered by the peripheral fibre from the innervated tissue's environment and relayed by two contiguous central axons to the brain, via the spinal cord. At this level, it is possible to characterize physical pain and emotional pain. These are supported by two different pathways, encoding two dimensions of pain perception: In Neo-spino-thalamic pathway, the wide dynamic range neuron system is able to provide the information needed for mapping the "sensory-discriminative" dimension of pain. The second projection system (Paleo-spino-thalamic pathway) also involves the ventromedial thalamus but projects to the amygdala, the insula and the anterior cingulate cortex. These areas are associated with emotionality and affect. CONCLUSION: The mechanical component of FBSS cannot be understood unless the functioning of the pain system is known. But ultimately, the highly variable nature of back pain expression among individuals would require a careful pathophysiological dissection of the potential generators of back pain to guide pain management strategies. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Masson SAS. All rights reserved.
This article was published in Neurochirurgie
and referenced in Journal of Aquaculture Research & Development