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Papers of the Week

Papers: 25 May 2024 - 31 May 2024

2024 May 24

Sci Rep




Characteristics of patients with myofascial pain syndrome of the low back.


Tsai PF, Edison JL, Wang CH, Gramlich MW, Manning KQ, Deshpande G, Bashir A, Sefton J


The objective of this study is to determine characteristics of patients with myofascial pain syndrome (MPS) of the low back and the degree to which the low back pain in the patients examined can be attributed to MPS. Twenty-five subjects with myofascial trigger point(s) [MTrP(s)] on the low back participated in this cross-sectional study. The location, number, and type of selected MTrPs were identified by palpation and verified by ultrasound. Pain pressure threshold, physical function, and other self-reported outcomes were measured. Significant differences were found in Group 1 (Active), 2 (Latent), 3 (Atypical, no twitching but with spontaneous pain), and 4 (Atypical, no twitching and no spontaneous pain) of participants in the number of MTrPs, current pain, and worst pain in the past 24 h (p = .001-.01). There were interaction effects between spontaneous pain and twitching response on reports of physical function, current pain, and worst pain (p = .002-.04). Participants in Group 3 reported lower levels of physical function, and higher levels of current pain and worst pain compared to those in Group 4. Participants in Group 1 and 2 had similar levels of physical function, current pain, and worst pain. The number of MTrPs is most closely associated with the level of pain. Spontaneous pain report seems to be a decisive factor associated with poor physical function; however, twitching response is not.