Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item:http://hdl.handle.net/20.500.12105/7432
Temporal relationship between perceptual and physiological events triggered by nociceptive heat stimuli
Sci Rep. 2019 Mar 1;9(1):3264.
A combined assessment tool for the perceptual-motor aspects of pain processing will be valuable to clinicians. Fifteen healthy subjects were exposed to contact-heat stimulation (Pathway, Medoc, Israel) to assess perception through a simple task (motor response or conscious appraisal of the time the stimulus was felt) or with a dual task (both responses). The outcome measure was the temporal relationship between contact heat evoked potentials (CHEPS), reaction time (RT) and conscious awareness (AW). There were different temporal profiles for CHEPs, RT and AW to changes in stimulus intensity, AW being the least affected. Performing the dual task led to a significantly more pronounced effect on RT than on AW, while CHEPS were not influenced by task performance. Our results support the dissociation between physiological, behavioral and cognitive events elicited by nociceptive stimuli. The time of conscious appraisal of stimulus occurrence is a complementary information to other responses such as evoked potentials or behavioral tasks. The combined assessment of physiological and behavioral aspects of pain processing may provide clinicians with information on the different paths followed by nociceptive afferent inputs in the central nervous system.
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