Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Pain processes in tennis elbow illuminated by PET scanning

Date:
October 28, 2013
Source:
Uppsala Universitet
Summary:
Physiological processes in soft tissue pain, such as chronic tennis elbow, can be explored using diagnostic imaging methods. A new use of positron emission tomography (PET) and a tracer for the signal receptor NK1 for visualising a physiological process is associated with pain imaging.

Physiological processes in soft tissue pain such as chronic tennis elbow can be explored using diagnostic imaging methods. This is demonstrated by researchers from Uppsala University and the results are now being published in the prestigious journal PLOS ONE. The pain physician and researcher Magnus Peterson is presenting a new use of positron emission tomography (PET) and a tracer for the signal receptor NK1 for visualising a physiological process associated with pain.

Chronic pain is a major problem, with considerable socioeconomic costs and suffering of the individual. Musculoskeletal pain is the most common type of pain and is one of the most common reasons for consultation in health care. However, pain from soft tissues, (i.e. pain from muscles, tendons and ligaments) is still lacking effective methods for localization and diagnosis of underlying pathophysiological mechanisms.

This means that diagnosis still depends on clinical examination, which provides no guidance regarding what mechanisms might underlie the pain. Consequently, treatment proceeds purely on an empirical basis. An improved diagnostic method that allows not only diagnosis of localisation of the painful tissue processes, but also can provide guidance regarding what pathophysiological mechanisms are involved, would therefore be highly valuable.

Magnus Peterson has worked with positron emission tomography (PET), a tool for diagnostic imaging, in combination with a specific tracer for the signal receptor NK1. The tracer is injected into the blood where it circulates through the body and binds to available NK1 receptors. The signal from the radioactive tracer can then be captured as an image outside the body using PET.

This is the first time an up-regulation of NK1 receptors has been visualized by diagnostic imaging in painful tissue in humans. The study clearly reveals an image of elevated levels of NK1 in the painful area compared with the healthy arm. 

Following tissue damage there is an up-regulation of the neuropeptide substance P and its receptor NK1. This occurs not only in the dorsal horn of the spinal cord, but also in the peripheral painful tissue. This up-regulation is part of an interaction between peripheral nerves, immune cells, and the tissue itself that seems to help guide the body’s own repair process. In chronic tennis elbow, this up-regulation of the substance P-NK1 system lingers on. This is what the researchers have managed to visualize with the help of PET and the marker for NK1.

The method is promising, but the costs are still high. PET is a complicated procedure, which requires costly equipment.

In the future, we hope to be able to develop less expensive markers that enable us to use the method in everyday clinical practice. We also aim to create markers for other physiological processes that we know are active in chronic soft tissue pain, says Magnus Peterson.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Uppsala Universitet. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Magnus Peterson, Kurt Svärdsudd, Lieuwe Appel, Henry Engler, Mikko Aarnio, Torsten Gordh, Bengt Långström, Jens Sörensen. PET-Scan Shows Peripherally Increased Neurokinin 1 Receptor Availability in Chronic Tennis Elbow: Visualizing Neurogenic Inflammation? PLoS ONE, 2013; 8 (10): e75859 DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0075859

Cite This Page:

Uppsala Universitet. "Pain processes in tennis elbow illuminated by PET scanning." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 28 October 2013. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/10/131028090419.htm>.
Uppsala Universitet. (2013, October 28). Pain processes in tennis elbow illuminated by PET scanning. ScienceDaily. Retrieved September 2, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/10/131028090419.htm
Uppsala Universitet. "Pain processes in tennis elbow illuminated by PET scanning." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/10/131028090419.htm (accessed September 2, 2014).

Share This




More Matter & Energy News

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Google Teases India Event, Possible Android One Reveal

Google Teases India Event, Possible Android One Reveal

Newsy (Sep. 1, 2014) — Google has announced a Sept. 15 event in India during which they're expected to reveal their Android One phones. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Australian Airlines Relax Phone Ban Too

Australian Airlines Relax Phone Ban Too

Reuters - Business Video Online (Aug. 26, 2014) — Qantas and Virgin say passengers can use their smartphones and tablets throughout flights after a regulator relaxed a ban on electronic devices during take-off and landing. As Hayley Platt reports the move comes as the two domestic rivals are expected to post annual net losses later this week. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Hurricane Marie Brings Big Waves to California Coast

Hurricane Marie Brings Big Waves to California Coast

Reuters - US Online Video (Aug. 26, 2014) — Huge waves generated by Hurricane Marie hit the Southern California coast. Rough Cut (no reporter narration). Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Chinese Researchers Might Be Creating Supersonic Submarine

Chinese Researchers Might Be Creating Supersonic Submarine

Newsy (Aug. 26, 2014) — Chinese researchers have expanded on Cold War-era tech and are closer to building a submarine that could reach the speed of sound. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
 
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:  

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:  

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile iPhone Android Web
Follow Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins