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Our Genes Contribute to Our Sensitivity

A recent study, led by researchers at the Queen Mary University of London, looked at the genetic basis behind sensitivity. They compared sensitivity in a sample of 2868 adolescent twins, with 1011 identical twins, 901 same-sex fraternal twins, and 956 opposite sex fraternal twins. Twins raised in the same…

Telemedicine as the New Alternative to In-Person Visits

Sometimes, when special circumstances like we are currently experiencing require, it is best to have minimal personal contact and to use social distancing as much as possible. Doctor’s visits may be minimal or canceled altogether if the visit is considered non-essential, however for those with chronic illnesses this…

How Exercise Improves your Immune System

There are many benefits of exercise on chronic pain. With the recent news of COVID-9, it’s also important to look at the impact of exercise on your immune system. In the past, it was thought that vigorous exercise could harm your immune system. Runners often reported infection symptoms after…

Weight Gain Slows your Metabolism

The Biggest Loser is a reality show that has overweight contestants competing for losing the most weight. The show has been heavily criticized by many viewers and health professionals as counterproductive and even dangerous, as the contestants far exceed the guidelines for what is generally considered safe weight…

Green LED light can reduce the occurrence and severity of headaches

Central nervous system regulation of “sensitivity” seems to affect more than pain. We found that sensitivity to sound and painful stimuli are increased in patients with fibromyalgia. Currently, we are working on examining a similar relationship for light and pain. In a study of 25 migraine patients involved…

How light can affect your pain

More research is “coming to light” about the effects that light has on our brain. Researchers at the University of Arizona recently studied the effects of green and red LED lights on rats. They found that rats exposed to green light for 8 hours a day for 5…

Sleep Deprivation and Depression

Sleep impacts a number of different physiological, hormonal and chemical processes in the brain. We generally assume that better sleep quality and duration can improve a number of conditions, but many research studies are showing that the relationship between sleep and depression is much more complicated. These studies found…

Pain Biomarkers

What are pain biomarkers and why are they useful to us? Pain biomarkers are useful and measurable indicators that can be used to identify or quantify pain in individuals. There are currently no pain biomarkers approved by the FDA for use in drug trails, so identifying reliable biomarkers…

HEAL: Helping to End Addiction Long-term

Dr. Staud is part of a research initiative at the NIH (National Institutes of Health) named HEAL. HEAL stands for Helping to End Addiction Long-term. It is an initiative designed to speed scientific solutions to cut down on the national opioid public health crisis as quickly as possible.

Acetaminophen May Reduce Empathy

Acetaminophen (like Tylenol) is a popular over the counter pain reliever and research shows it can dull more than just pain. Acetaminophen reduces activity in parts of the brain related to both physical and emotional pain. These same brain areas also play a role in positive empathy, which…