High Pain Sensitivity

Graph showing the relationship between pain intensity and stimulus intensity. Allodynia occurs when the stimulus is weaker and hyperalgesia when the stimulus is stronger

Many factors like trauma, stress, infections, can increase your pain sensitivity. Patients with chronic pain conditions like fibromyalgia (FM) have greater sensitivity to pain. This abnormal pain sensitivity can come in different forms, including hyperalgesia and allodynia. Hyperalgesia describes the increased sensitivity to painful stimuli while allodynia is defined as feeling painful sensations from a non-painful stimulus, like light touch. Individuals with FM usually have both as well as other central nervous system (CNS) mediated symptoms, like fatigue, insomnia, depressed mood, and cognitive problems. Our goal is to identify these changes in the nervous system, so that we can find better ways to diagnose, prevent and treat chronic pain in the future.