Posted 17 February 2008 - 03:59 PM
I hear ya about the burning pain. There are many many theories as to why it occurs. Its a complex situation. Through my research, I have come across studies which:
* link chronic pain with Kiniesophobia and a situation whereby the body's pain receptors become overloaded and hyper sensitive, to such an extent that they are unable to lessen or switch off.
*Then there are theories that it is a "phantom" pain, much in the same way that an Amputee may experience hell pain in a limb which is no longer there.
*Then there is the theory that it is as a result of the Nerve impulses traveling down the Spinal cord and branching out into the nerve branches where it can ( ie above the site of injury) and then malfunctioning and causing 'sparking' at the point of the lesion. Some of these 'sparks' are able to get through in the reminants of the incomplete injury, of else the point below injury is trying its best to connect - and so actually imagines what it might feel like, but buggers it up!
*Then there are the ones mentioned elsewhere in this thread. Who knows what the true cause is? I just hope that it will somehow be defeated!!
Unfortunately, it is not just incomplete injuries who feel it, completes can too. Sometimes folks have it in one area, other times it can be widespread ( like Moi). It seems to be part of my pain picture- unfortunately. I have been a chair user ( I would say in a chair, but that makes me sound glued there!) for over 2.5 years and had/have had issues with daily dislocations and varying degrees of paralysis/parasthesia ( until that fateful day) and I have 4 or so different types of pain which are still very much there. However, I am not a straight forward case as I have a connective tissue disorder (ie the dislocations etc), and an underling pain fatigue condition related to this, as well as paralysis. All these may contribute to that "neuro" nerve pain, although they are all different types of pain. Who knows, maybe the collective bunch leads to overload neurologically?. (like I said above, Scientists DO actually think this may be the case with some people - a kind of over sensitization, which the body needs 'resetting' from).
Also, unfortunately, as I have already said, it is very possible to have several types of pain at the same time. I have pain from dislocations (multiple every day), pain which is nerve type, an underlying 'multi trauma' pain etc...
Here at Apparelyzed, Simon has constructed a huge section (Thanks Simon!) with pinned articles on pain. Just search for pain ( of the type you are wishing to focus on) in that section.
With regards to medicinal pain relief, some folks swear by "Pot" and other 'herbal' avenues, others look into mind training to get the mind to 'ignore' as far as possible the pain, others look into acupuncture, massage and Reiki. Some people try everything they can ( like me! lol)...
Looking at this from a Pharmaceutical point of view, there are a few things to consider:
As is sometimes the way, some drugs which are Primarily licensed for one use, can have a side effect of treating another. This is the case with anti convulsant meds ( ie Neurontin┬«, Lyrica┬«, Gabapentin┬« etc) which are utilized for their secondary use. In a nutshell, often by accident drugs licenced for one condition have been found to have a side effect which is positively affecting another.
Other groups which can be used to assist in the treatment of Neurological and bone pains are Antidepressants. Some scientists and Pain drs also have seen some positive feedback of alpha-2-adrenergic agonists. These include tizanidine (Zanaflex┬«) and clonidine (Catapres┬«). Dextromethorphan, which is basically a cough suppressant when used- under a drs advice, in much higher quantities is also useful for some types of Neuro pain.
Some of the "neuro" affecting drugs are limited to helping with certain pain situations. For example, Baclofen apparently is more effective ( as a pain reliever) in trigeminal neuralgia.
I have tried Gabapentin and Topamax and am about to take Lyrica (along with my opiates ) and may even try Zacin ( made out of the stuff Chillis are made out of and is meant to kill like crazy, but block pain receptors) we are just not sure if it will be that useful for Neuropathic pain, I tried extra hot Tiger balm and didn't help.... Unfortunately, like many others I have constant debilitating and gut wrenching, and all the verbs you can use pain. I actually have nerve, dislocations pain ( multiple, each day) and tendon and underlying other pains./..Its a wonder I can tell the different types, or that the drs can....
I hope that this helps in some way,
Ex Nurse (med retired)
Connective tissue disorder & associ SCI. Several extensions due spondolythesis (spinal dislocations)