Discrimination of muscle tension in chronic pain patients and healthy controls

Herta Flor, Markus M. Schugens, Niels Birbaumer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

41 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The purpose of this study was to assess the perception of muscle tension in chronic pain patients and healthy controls. Twenty chronic back pain patients, 20 patients who suffered from temporomandibular pain and dysfunction, and 20 healthy controls were instructed to produce eight different levels of muscle contraction in either the m. masseter or the m. erector spinae. Each level was produced three times; trials were presented in random order. Analyses of the accuracy and the sensitivity of discrimination of muscle tension levels revealed that the patients were less able to perceive muscle contraction levels correctly and that they underestimated their actual levels of muscle tension. Patients and controls did not differ in the extent to which they contracted muscles not involved in the task. Patients suffering from musculoskeletal disorders seem to display a genuine deficit in discrimination of muscle tension that is related to neither local physiological changes at the site of pain, lack of motivation, inattention, nor fatigue.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)165-177
Number of pages13
JournalBiofeedback and Self-Regulation
Volume17
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Sep 1992

Fingerprint

Muscle Tonus
Chronic Pain
pain
muscles
muscle contraction
Muscle Contraction
musculoskeletal diseases
Pain
back (body region)
Back Pain
Fatigue
Discrimination (Psychology)
Motivation
Muscles

Keywords

  • chronic back pain
  • EMG
  • perception
  • TMPD

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Agricultural and Biological Sciences(all)

Cite this

Discrimination of muscle tension in chronic pain patients and healthy controls. / Flor, Herta; Schugens, Markus M.; Birbaumer, Niels.

In: Biofeedback and Self-Regulation, Vol. 17, No. 3, 09.1992, p. 165-177.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Flor, Herta ; Schugens, Markus M. ; Birbaumer, Niels. / Discrimination of muscle tension in chronic pain patients and healthy controls. In: Biofeedback and Self-Regulation. 1992 ; Vol. 17, No. 3. pp. 165-177.
@article{64ef15151cb74945999e956c8684db14,
title = "Discrimination of muscle tension in chronic pain patients and healthy controls",
abstract = "The purpose of this study was to assess the perception of muscle tension in chronic pain patients and healthy controls. Twenty chronic back pain patients, 20 patients who suffered from temporomandibular pain and dysfunction, and 20 healthy controls were instructed to produce eight different levels of muscle contraction in either the m. masseter or the m. erector spinae. Each level was produced three times; trials were presented in random order. Analyses of the accuracy and the sensitivity of discrimination of muscle tension levels revealed that the patients were less able to perceive muscle contraction levels correctly and that they underestimated their actual levels of muscle tension. Patients and controls did not differ in the extent to which they contracted muscles not involved in the task. Patients suffering from musculoskeletal disorders seem to display a genuine deficit in discrimination of muscle tension that is related to neither local physiological changes at the site of pain, lack of motivation, inattention, nor fatigue.",
keywords = "chronic back pain, EMG, perception, TMPD",
author = "Herta Flor and Schugens, {Markus M.} and Niels Birbaumer",
year = "1992",
month = "9",
doi = "10.1007/BF01000401",
language = "English",
volume = "17",
pages = "165--177",
journal = "Applied Psychophysiology Biofeedback",
issn = "1090-0586",
publisher = "Plenum Press",
number = "3",

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - Discrimination of muscle tension in chronic pain patients and healthy controls

AU - Flor, Herta

AU - Schugens, Markus M.

AU - Birbaumer, Niels

PY - 1992/9

Y1 - 1992/9

N2 - The purpose of this study was to assess the perception of muscle tension in chronic pain patients and healthy controls. Twenty chronic back pain patients, 20 patients who suffered from temporomandibular pain and dysfunction, and 20 healthy controls were instructed to produce eight different levels of muscle contraction in either the m. masseter or the m. erector spinae. Each level was produced three times; trials were presented in random order. Analyses of the accuracy and the sensitivity of discrimination of muscle tension levels revealed that the patients were less able to perceive muscle contraction levels correctly and that they underestimated their actual levels of muscle tension. Patients and controls did not differ in the extent to which they contracted muscles not involved in the task. Patients suffering from musculoskeletal disorders seem to display a genuine deficit in discrimination of muscle tension that is related to neither local physiological changes at the site of pain, lack of motivation, inattention, nor fatigue.

AB - The purpose of this study was to assess the perception of muscle tension in chronic pain patients and healthy controls. Twenty chronic back pain patients, 20 patients who suffered from temporomandibular pain and dysfunction, and 20 healthy controls were instructed to produce eight different levels of muscle contraction in either the m. masseter or the m. erector spinae. Each level was produced three times; trials were presented in random order. Analyses of the accuracy and the sensitivity of discrimination of muscle tension levels revealed that the patients were less able to perceive muscle contraction levels correctly and that they underestimated their actual levels of muscle tension. Patients and controls did not differ in the extent to which they contracted muscles not involved in the task. Patients suffering from musculoskeletal disorders seem to display a genuine deficit in discrimination of muscle tension that is related to neither local physiological changes at the site of pain, lack of motivation, inattention, nor fatigue.

KW - chronic back pain

KW - EMG

KW - perception

KW - TMPD

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=0026918231&partnerID=8YFLogxK

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/citedby.url?scp=0026918231&partnerID=8YFLogxK

U2 - 10.1007/BF01000401

DO - 10.1007/BF01000401

M3 - Article

C2 - 1387553

AN - SCOPUS:0026918231

VL - 17

SP - 165

EP - 177

JO - Applied Psychophysiology Biofeedback

JF - Applied Psychophysiology Biofeedback

SN - 1090-0586

IS - 3

ER -