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2022 Aug 08

J Clin Med



Pain Extent Is Not Associated with Sensory-Associated Symptoms, Cognitive or Psychological Variables in COVID-19 Survivors Suffering from Post-COVID Pain.


Fernández-de-Las-Peñas C, Fuensalida-Novo S, Ortega-Santiago R, Valera-Calero JA, Cescon C, Derboni M, Giuffrida V, Barbero M
J Clin Med. 2022 Aug 08; 11(15).
PMID: 35956247.


We aimed to investigate the relationship between pain extent, as a sign of sensitization, and sensory-related, cognitive and psychological variables in hospitalized COVID-19 survivors with post-COVID pain. One hundred and forty-six (67 males, 79 females) previously hospitalized COVID-19 survivors with post-COVID pain completed demographic (age, sex, height, weight), sensory-related (Central Sensitization Inventory, Self-Report Leeds Assessment of Neuropathic Symptoms), cognitive (Pain Catastrophizing Scale, Tampa Scale for Kinesiophobia) and psychological (Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale, Pittsburgh Sleep Quality Index) variables. Pain extent and frequency maps were calculated from pain drawings using customized software. After conducting a correlation analysis to determine the relationships between variables, a stepwise linear regression model was performed to identify pain extent predictors, if available. Pain extent was significantly and weakly associated with pain intensity (r = -0.201, = 0.014): the larger the pain extent, the lower the pain intensity. No other significant association was observed between pain extent and sensory-related, cognitive, or psychological variables in individuals with post-COVID pain. Females had higher pain intensity, more sensitization-associated symptoms, higher anxiety, lower sleep quality, and higher kinesiophobia levels than males. Sex differences correlation analyses revealed that pain extent was associated with pain intensity in males, but not in females. Pain extent was not associated with any of the measured variables and was also not related to the presence of sensitization-associated symptoms in our sample of COVID-19 survivors with long-term post-COVID pain.