Showing posts with label Pain. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Pain. Show all posts

Jul 11, 2014

Pain and Coughing

Next time you feel some pain, such as a shot from the doctor, or paper cut, or a prick from a plant thorn, force a rough cough or a few coughs. Coughing  has been shown to moderate the feeling of pain.

Mar 8, 2013

Bugs and Pain

Bugs may be a pain to us, but they feel no pain. Pain is officially defined as, "An unpleasant sensory and emotional experience associated with actual or potential tissue damage". It is experienced differently by each person and organism. Because of this it is extremely difficult to describe just how an animal experiences pain.

To study how an animal experiences pain, argument-by-analogy is applied. This means if the animal reacts in a similar way to how we would, we believe they are experiencing pain. An example might be if a dog is pricked with a pin and runs away, as a human would.

Insects have no capacity to feel pain. Nociceptors are what carry the feeling of pain to the brain. These are essential to experience pain, yet insects and crustaceans have never been found to have any nociceptors. This means most of these animals are unable to feel any sort of pain. Most insects do not possess nociceptors. I knew when I squished them they were not yelling.

Sep 24, 2011

Finding Pain

A team at Stanford University in California used computer learning software to sort through data generated by brain scans and detect when people were in pain.

"The question we were trying to answer was can we use neuroimaging to objectively detect whether a person is in a state of pain or not. The answer was yes," Dr. Sean Mackey of the Stanford University School of Medicine in California, whose study appears in the journal PLoS One.

Currently, doctors rely on patients to tell them whether or not they are in pain. And that is still the gold standard for assessing pain, Mackey said.

Some patients, the very young, the very old, dementia patients or those who are not conscious, cannot say if they are hurting, and that has led to a long search for some way to objectively measure pain.

"People have been looking for a pain detector for a very long time. We're hopeful we can eventually use this technology for better detection and better treatment of chronic pain."

His team used a computer algorithm invented in 1995 to classify patterns of brain activity and determine whether or not someone is experiencing pain.

To train the computer, eight volunteers underwent brain scans while they were touched first by an object that was hot, and then by one that was so hot it was painful. The computer used data from these scans to recognize different brain activity patterns that occur when a person is detecting heat, and which ones detect pain.

The computer was more than 80 percent accurate in detecting which brain scans were of people in pain, and it was just as accurate at ruling out those who were not in pain.

Apr 26, 2011

Cuss to Ease the Pain

No need to feel bad about it, says a 2-year-old study from the journal NeuroReport that's been making the rounds this week. Swearing actually helps reduce the pain you feel.

Researchers from Keele University in Staffordshire, England, asked test subjects to put their hands in icy cold water, and see how long they could stand to keep them immersed. (This is a common practice to test pain, because it leaves no mark and does no physiological harm.)

They then had the study participants either say a swear word or a neutral word. They found that those who invoked foul language were able to withstand the pain better than those who kept it clean.

The researchers think that swearing induces a flight-or-fight response, and thus, "nullifies the link between fear of pain and pain perception."

This doesn't mean you should let loose indiscriminately, though. The effect worked best for people who did not swear often.