What is Neuropathic Pain?
Central pain syndrome, sometimes called neuropathic pain, is caused by dysfuction of the nervous system, which includes the brain, brainstem, and spinal cord. The disorder is most often caused by strokes, multiple sclerosis, Parkinson's disease, brain injuries and brain tumors, and spinal cord injuries. It may occur soon after damage to the CNS or months or years later.
This type of pain is characterized by a number of different painful sensations but most often is felt as a constant burning sensation that can be amplified by light touch. it can also increase with temperature changes, most commonly brought on by cold temperatures. The pain can be mixed with a loss of sensation, such as numbness or tingling, and is most prominently felt in the hands and feet, especially the lower extremities. Occasionally, It can be experienced as brief, repetitive, intolerable burst of sharp, "electrical" pain.
Pain medications provide at best partial relief. However, those medications that have been found to be most effective are anticonvulsants (antiepileptics), and antidepressants, or combinations of different medications.
New Motion has a great article in this months issue that tell different peoples experience with neuropathic pain and how they manage it. Click on the New Mobility link below to read the full article.