Thursday, August 7, 2008

Similarities of upper trapezius trigger point pain & chronic tension type headache

Referred pain from trapezius muscle trigger points shares similar characteristics with chronic tension type headache.
In one study referred pain and pain characteristics evoked from the upper trapezius muscle was investigated in 20 patients with chronic tension-type headache (CTTH).
Both upper trapezius muscles were examined for the presence of myofascial trigger points. The local and referred pain intensities, referred pain pattern, and pressure pain threshold (PPT) were noted.

The results show that:

  1. In CTTH patients, the evoked referred pain and its sensory characteristics shared similar patterns as their habitual headache pain, consistent with active upper trapezius.
  2. This study further suggests that spatial summation of perceived pain and mechanical pain sensitivity exists in CTTH patients.

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