Pain and Neuroinflammation Imaging Lab

Diverse Role of Biological Plasticity in Low Back Pain and Its Impact on Sensorimotor Control of the Spine


Hodges, P., et al., 2019. Diverse Role of Biological Plasticity in Low Back Pain and Its Impact on Sensorimotor Control of the Spine. J Orthop Sports Phys Ther , 49 (6) , pp. 389-401.

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BACKGROUND: Pain is complex. It is no longer acceptable to consider pain solely as a peripheral phenomenon involving activation of nociceptive neurons. The contemporary understanding of pain involves consideration of different underlying pain mechanisms and an increasing awareness of plasticity in all of the biological systems. Of note, recent advances in technology and understanding have highlighted the critical importance of neuroimmune interactions, both in the peripheral and central nervous systems, and the interaction between the nervous system and body tissues in the development and maintenance of pain, including low back pain (LBP). Further, the biology of many tissues changes when challenged by pain and injury, as reported in a growing body of literature on the biology of muscle, fat, and connective tissue. These advances in understanding of the complexity of LBP have implications for our understanding of pain and its interaction with the motor system, and may change how we consider motor control in the rehabilitation of LBP. This commentary provides a state-of-the-art overview of plasticity of biology in LBP. The paper is divided into 4 parts that address (1) biology of pain mechanisms, (2) neuroimmune interaction in the central nervous system, (3) neuroimmune interaction in the periphery, and (4) brain and peripheral tissue interaction. Each section considers the implications for clinical management of LBP.

Last updated on 08/22/2019