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Health Agencies Update
October 23/30, 2013

Scientists Find Clues to Why Some Develop Chronic Pain

JAMA. 2013;310(16):1666. doi:10.1001/jama.2013.281121

Whether an individual develops chronic pain may depend on structural differences in the white matter of the brain, suggests a study funded by the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke.

To probe the neural differences in individuals who develop chronic pain, researchers used diffusion tensor imaging to scan the brains of 24 individuals who had developed lower back pain but had no previous history of back pain; the patients were then followed up for more than a year (Mansour AR et al. Pain. 2013:154[10]:2160-2168).