pain threshold

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pain thresh·old

the lowest intensity of a painful stimulus at which the subject perceives pain.

pain threshold

the point at which a stimulus, usually one associated with pressure or temperature, activates pain receptors and produces a sensation of pain. Individuals with low pain thresholds experience pain much sooner and faster than those with higher thresholds; individuals' reactions to stimulation of pain receptors vary.

pain thresh·old

(pān threshōld)
Lowest intensity of a painful stimulus at which the subject perceives pain.

pain thresh·old

(pān threshōld)
Lowest intensity of a painful stimulus at which subject perceives pain.

pain

a feeling of distress, suffering or agony, caused by stimulation of specialized nerve endings. Its purpose is chiefly protective; it acts as a warning that tissues are being damaged and induces the sufferer to remove or withdraw from the source.
All receptors for pain stimuli are free nerve endings of groups of myelinated or unmyelinated neural fibers abundantly distributed in the superficial layers of the skin and in certain deeper tissues such as the periosteum, surfaces of the joints, arterial walls, and the falx and tentorium of the cranial cavity. The distribution of pain receptors in the gastrointestinal mucosa apparently is similar to that in the skin; thus, the mucosa is quite sensitive to irritation and other painful stimuli. Although the parenchyma of the liver and the alveoli of the lungs are almost entirely insensitive to pain, the liver as an organ and the bile ducts are extremely sensitive, as are the bronchi, ureters, parietal pleura and peritoneum.
Some pain receptors are selective in their response to stimuli, but most are sensitive to more than one of the following types of excitation: (1) mechanical stress of trauma; (2) extremes of heat and cold; and (3) chemical substances, such as histamine, potassium ions, acids, prostaglandins, bradykinin and acetylcholine.
The conscious perception of pain probably takes place in the thalamus and lower centers; interpretation of the quality of pain is probably the role of the cerebral cortex.
There are some naturally occurring internal systems in the body that are known to control pain but none of them has been completely verified. One of the best known is the gate control system in which it is thought that pain impulses are mediated in the substantia gelatinosa of the spinal cord.

abdominal pain
pain occurring in the area between the thorax and pelvis. Manifestations vary between species. Identifiable syndromes include: (1) horse—pawing, flank watching, rolling, straddling as though to urinate, lying on the back; (2) cattle—may depress back and paddle with hindfeet but mostly arched back, grunting, immobility; (3) dogs and cats—arched back, grunting, depression, reluctance to move. Sometimes there is elevation of the hindquarters, with the chest and forelegs on the ground (the so-called 'praying dog' attitude).
Beagle pain syndrome
see beagle pain syndrome.
projected pain
pathology in one area can affect the nerve supply to a distant area in which pain is experienced.
pain receptors
free nerve endings of tufts of fine points or buttons.
referred pain
pain felt in an area distant from the site of pathology but not mediated through a common innervation. There is no evidence that referred pain occurs in animals but it seems likely on anatomical grounds.
pain threshold
the lowest level at which a stimulus can be applied and cause perceptible pain.
pain tolerance
the level of stimulation at which pain becomes intolerable.
References in periodicals archive ?
It has been suggested that heightened sensitivity to pain, also known as a low pain threshold, could be caused by dysfunction of peripheral or central pain processing, or dysfunction of opioid-mediated endogenous pain inhibitory systems.
The presence of long-lasting extraterritorial alterations in pain thresholds in these previously burned subjects may have implications for our understanding of the mechanisms contributing to pain after thermal injury.
A quantitative somatosensory testing of pain threshold in individuals with mental retardation.
Results showed that while sleep deprivation (RSO) had no effect on pain thresholds, during partial sleep deprivation the FA group showed a significant loss of pain inhibition and an increase in spontaneous pain.
Bradley and his colleagues also evaluated the group differences in pain thresholds after controlling for the influence of serotonin.
Even though indentation instruments and pressure algometers exist, these have not been connected so that tissue properties as well as discomfort and pain thresholds can be assessed at the same time.
Thus, serotonin appears to have a limited influence on pressure and thermal pain thresholds.
In the study, pain thresholds of women at term did not vary widely, but the majority could not tolerate this at all, he said.
Some guys bounce back quicker than others, and guys have different pain thresholds,'' Muckey said.
For example, both morphine and sucrose infusions increase pain thresholds and reduce distress cries in 10-day-old rats; naltrexone, a substance that blocks opioid receptors and thus interferes with morphine's effects, similarly suppresses sucrose's ability to soothe.