- Fecal Incontinence
|Quantitative somatosensory testing of the abdomen: establishing initial reference values across developmental age and biological sex
Pain. 2023 Jul 28. doi: 10.1097/j.pain.0000000000003001. Online ahead of print.
Christine B Sieberg 1 2 3, Claire E Lunde 1 2 4, Amy L Shafrir 5 6, Samantha M Meints 7 8, Mehnaz Madraswalla 1, Devon Huntley 1, Hannah Olsen 1, Cindy Wong 1, Amy D DiVasta 5 6, Stacey A Missmer 5 6 9 10, Navil Sethna 8 11
1Biobehavioral Pain Innovations Lab, Department of Psychiatry & Behavioral Sciences, Boston Children's Hospital, Boston, MA, United States.
2Pain and Affective Neuroscience Center, Department of Anesthesiology, Critical Care, and Pain Medicine, Boston Children's Hospital, Boston, MA, United States.
3Department of Psychiatry, Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA, United States.
4Nuffield Department of Women's and Reproductive Health, Medical Sciences Division, University of Oxford, Oxford, United Kingdom.
5Division of Adolescent/Young Adult Medicine, Department of Pediatrics, Boston Children's Hospital and Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA, United States.
6Boston Center for Endometriosis, Brigham and Women's Hospital and Boston Children's Hospital, Boston, MA, United States.
7Department of Anesthesiology, Perioperative and Pain Medicine, Brigham and Women's Hospital, Boston, MA, United States.
8Department of Anesthesiology, Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA, United States.
9Department of Epidemiology, Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, Boston, MA, United States.
10Department of Obstetrics, Gynecology and Reproductive Biology, College of Human Medicine, Michigan State University, United States.
11Department of Anesthesiology, Critical Care and Pain Medicine, Boston Children's Hospital, Boston, MA, United States.
Abdominal pain is a common symptom of several debilitating conditions (eg, inflammatory bowel disease, irritable bowel syndrome, and endometriosis) and affects individuals throughout their lifespan. Quantitative sensory testing (QST) reference values exist for many body sites but not the abdomen. Using a QST battery adapted from the German Research Network on Neuropathic Pain, we collected QST data on the upper and lower abdomen in 181 pain-free participants, ages 12 to 50 years, to establish reference values by age and biological sex. The normative values are presented as medians for each QST measure by sex (male, n = 63; female, n = 118) and across 3 age categories (adolescents: 12-19 years, n = 48; young adults: 20-30 years, n = 87; and adults: 31-50 years, n = 46). Evaluating the sensory functioning of the abdomen and characterizing ranges of QST measures is an essential first step in understanding and monitoring the clinical course of sensory abnormalities in patients with underlying diseases affecting the abdomen and pelvis. The impact of age and development on sensory functioning is necessary, given age-related changes in pain perception and modulation.