Acute and Chronic Pain: Where we are and where we have to go - Proceedings from the 3rd San Matteo International Meeting on Pain Research (SIMPAR), December 3-4, 2010, Pavia, Italy
Postoperative pain remains inadequately treated, and it has been estimated that 5-10% undergoing surgery will develop moderate to severe persistent pain leading to chronic physical disability and psychosocial distress. Quantitative sensory testing (QST) is a graded, standardized activation of the sensory system either by mechanical, thermal or electrical stimuli, with assessment of the evoked psychophysical response. QST has been used in prospective assessments of how and why some individuals develop persistent postoperative pain. This comprehensive review describes, first, QST as a predictive research tool in studies investigating the correlation between responses to preoperatively applied experimental pain stimuli and clinical postoperative pain. Second, the use of QST as a valuable prognostic, sequential assessment tool in surgical procedure specific research is presented. Third, the implications of these findings for use of QST in future research are discussed. More rational design of predictive studies in PPP, based on surgical procedure specific approaches, is needed in order to improve our understanding of prevention and management of this debilitating postsurgical condition.
European Journal of Pain Supplements, 2010, Vol 4, Issue 4, p. 203-207