Cortical changes to experimental sensitization of the human esophagus

S. A K Sami, P. Rössel, G. Dimcevski, K. Dremstrup Nielsen, P. Funch-Jensen, M. Valeriani, L. Arendt-Nielsen, A. M. Drewes

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Topographical organization in the neocortex shows experience-dependent plasticity. We hypothesized that experimental sensitization of the esophagus results in changes of the topographical distribution of the evoked potentials and the corresponding dipole source activities to painful stimulation. An endoscopic method was used to deliver 35 electrical stimuli at the pain threshold to a fixed area of the mucosa in 10 healthy volunteer men and women. The stimulations were repeated after 30 min (reproducibility experiment), and after 60 min following perfusion of 200 ml 0.1 N hydrochloric acid (sensitization experiment). During stimulation the electroencephalogram was recorded from 64 surface electrodes. The sensitization resulted in a decrease in the pain threshold (F=6.2; P=0.004). The topographic distribution of the evoked potentials showed reproducible negative (N1, N2) and positive (P1, P2) components. After acid perfusion a reduced latency and a change in localization was seen for the P1 subdivided into frontal and occipital components (F=29.5, P

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)269-279
Number of pages11
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2006


  • esophagus
  • experimental pain
  • plasticity
  • sensitization

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuroscience(all)


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