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May 1960

Pain and Itch, Nervous Mechanisms.

AMA Arch Neurol. 1960;2(5):593-594. doi:10.1001/archneur.1960.03840110107014

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Several of the important studies in this symposium on pain and itch suffer because they were made on laboratory animals, which obviously cannot supply the crucial data—namely whether they feel itch or pain. Sensation can be properly studied only in conscious man. Hence the information gained from other sources remains of limited value as regards sensation, even though it illuminates the effects of stimulation of afferent fibers and their endings by a variety of methods.

The controversy concerning the structure of the neural equipment involved in different sensations still continues. The long-held view that specific sensations are subserved by specific fiber systems was seriously challenged some years ago by the group of Oxford investigators, notably Weddell. According to Weddell, on analyzing the heights of spike potentials evoked by corneal stimulation, it becomes evident that the larger spikes are common to blushing, and the result of stimulation with cold, warmth

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