Quantitative sensory assessments of musculoskeletal pain using pressure algometry require, as for assessing neuropathic pain, two different disciplines where the first is standardised stimulation of deep-tissue nociceptors, and the second is standardised quantification of the evoked pain sensation. Both of those disciplines can introduce variability and hence hamper the reliability of the method.1Reliability, specificity, and sensitivity of quantitative sensory testing (QST)Quantitative sensory testing (QST) is being applied more and more frequently in clinical studies for profiling pain patients or for profiling the mode-of-action of new/existing analgesics. Advanced QST profiling can provide a better understanding of the mechanisms involved in pain transduction, transmission, and perception under normal and pathophysiological conditions and provide the basis for mechanism-based diagnosis, prevention, and management of pain. Before such tests can be applied in clinical trials, the reliability, specificity, and sensitivity have to be known. Furthermore, QST techniques by nature rely on subjective responses from the person being tested which is introducing uncertainties and variation. However, some of the techniques, e.g. hand help pressure algometry, also rely on how the experimenter/rater is doing the tests.2Documenting variability caused by the person doing pressure pain measurementsValidating such variability, although important, is often not prioritised as it takes
Scandinavian Journal of Pain – de Gruyter
Published: Dec 29, 2017
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