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      Muscle injections with lidocaine improve resting fatigue and pain in patients with chronic fatigue syndrome

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          Abstract

          Objective

          Patients with chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS) complain of long-lasting fatigue and pain which are not relieved by rest and worsened by physical exertion. Previous research has implicated metaboreceptors of muscles to play an important role for chronic fatigue and pain. Therefore, we hypothesized that blocking impulse input from deep tissues with intramuscular lidocaine injections would improve not only the pain but also fatigue of CFS patients.

          Methods

          In a double-blind, placebo-controlled study, 58 CFS patients received 20 mL of 1% lidocaine (200 mg) or normal saline once into both trapezius and gluteal muscles. Study outcomes included clinical fatigue and pain, depression, and anxiety. In addition, mechanical and heat hyperalgesia were assessed and serum levels of lidocaine were obtained after the injections.

          Results

          Fatigue ratings of CFS patients decreased significantly more after lidocaine compared to saline injections ( p = 0.03). In contrast, muscle injections reduced pain, depression, and anxiety ( p < 0.001), but these changes were not statistically different between lidocaine and saline ( p > 0.05). Lidocaine injections increased mechanical pain thresholds of CFS patients ( p = 0.04) but did not affect their heat hyperalgesia. Importantly, mood changes or lidocaine serum levels did not significantly predict fatigue reductions.

          Conclusion

          These results demonstrate that lidocaine injections reduce clinical fatigue of CFS patients significantly more than placebo, suggesting an important role of peripheral tissues for chronic fatigue. Future investigations will be necessary to evaluate the clinical benefits of such interventions.

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          Most cited references 38

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          A comparison of pain measurement characteristics of mechanical visual analogue and simple numerical rating scales.

          Numerical rating scales and mechanical visual analogue scales (M-VAS) were compared for their capacity to provide ratio scale measures of experimental pain. Separate estimates of experimental pain sensation intensity and pain unpleasantness were obtained by each method, as were estimates of clinical pain. Orofacial pain patients made numerical scale and VAS ratings in response to noxious thermal stimuli (45-51 degrees C) applied for 5 sec to the forearm by a contact thermode. The derived stimulus-response function was well fit as a power function only in the case of sensory M-VAS. The power function derived from sensory M-VAS ratings predicted temperatures chosen as twice as intense as standard temperatures of 47 degrees C and 48 degrees C, thereby providing evidence for ratio scale characteristics of M-VAS. The stimulus-response function derived from sensory numerical ratings differed from that obtained with M-VAS and did not provide accurate predictions of temperatures perceived as twice intense at 47 degrees C or 48 degrees C. Both M-VAS and numerical rating scales produced reliably different stimulus response functions for pain sensation intensity as compared to pain unpleasantness and both provided consistent measures of experimental and clinical pain intensity. Finally, both mechanical and pencil-and-paper VAS produced very similar stimulus-response functions. The ratio scale properties of M-VAS combined with its ease of administration and scoring in clinical settings offer the possibility of a simple yet powerful pain measurement technology in both research and health care settings.
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            Central sensitization: a biopsychosocial explanation for chronic widespread pain in patients with fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue syndrome

             Mira Meeus,  Jo Nijs (2006)
            In addition to the debilitating fatigue, the majority of patients with chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS) experience chronic widespread pain. These pain complaints show the greatest overlap between CFS and fibromyalgia (FM). Although the literature provides evidence for central sensitization as cause for the musculoskeletal pain in FM, in CFS this evidence is currently lacking, despite the observed similarities in both diseases. The knowledge concerning the physiological mechanism of central sensitization, the pathophysiology and the pain processing in FM, and the knowledge on the pathophysiology of CFS lead to the hypothesis that central sensitization is also responsible for the sustaining pain complaints in CFS. This hypothesis is based on the hyperalgesia and allodynia reported in CFS, on the elevated concentrations of nitric oxide presented in the blood of CFS patients, on the typical personality styles seen in CFS and on the brain abnormalities shown on brain images. To examine the present hypothesis more research is required. Further investigations could use similar protocols to those already used in studies on pain in FM like, for example, studies on temporal summation, spatial summation, the role of psychosocial aspects in chronic pain, etc.
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              Cognitive behaviour therapy for chronic fatigue syndrome: a multicentre randomised controlled trial.

              Cognitive behaviour therapy (CBT) seems a promising treatment for chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS), but the applicability of this treatment outside specialised settings has been questioned. We compared CBT with guided support groups and the natural course in a randomised trial at three centres. Of 476 patients diagnosed with CFS, 278 were eligible and willing to take part. 93 were randomly assigned CBT (administered by 13 therapists recently trained in this technique for CFS), 94 were assigned the support-group approach, and 91 the control natural course. Multidimensional assessments were done at baseline, 8 months, and 14 months. The primary outcome variables were fatigue severity (on the checklist individual strength) and functional impairment (on the sickness impact profile) at 8 and 14 months. Data were analysed by intention to treat. 241 patients had complete data (83 CBT, 80 support groups, 78 natural course) at 8 months. At 14 months CBT was significantly more effective than both control conditions for fatigue severity (CBT vs support groups 5.8 [2.2-9.4]; CBT vs natural course 5.6 [2.1-9.0]) and for functional impairment (CBT vs support groups 263 [38-488]; CBT vs natural course 222 [3-441]). Support groups were not more effective for CFS patients than the natural course. Among the CBT group, clinically significant improvement was seen in fatigue severity for 20 of 58 (35%), in Karnofsky performance status for 28 of 57 (49%), and self-rated improvement for 29 of 58 (50%). Prognostic factors for outcome after CBT were a higher sense of control predicting more improvement, and a passive activity pattern and focusing on bodily symptoms predicting less improvement. CBT was more effective than guided support groups and the natural course in a multicentre trial with many therapists. Our study showed a lower proportion of patients with improvement than CBT trials with a few highly skilled therapists.
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                Author and article information

                Journal
                J Pain Res
                J Pain Res
                Journal of Pain Research
                Journal of Pain Research
                Dove Medical Press
                1178-7090
                2017
                26 June 2017
                : 10
                : 1477-1486
                Affiliations
                [1 ]Department of Medicine, College of Medicine
                [2 ]Department of Clinical and Health Psychology, University of Florida, Gainesville, FL, USA
                Author notes
                Correspondence: Roland Staud, Department of Medicine, College of Medicine, University of Florida, 1600 SW Archer Rd, Gainesville, FL 32610-0221, USA, Tel +1 352 273 9681, Fax +1 352 392 8483, Email staudr@ 123456ufl.edu
                Article
                jpr-10-1477
                10.2147/JPR.S139466
                5499959
                © 2017 Staud et al. This work is published and licensed by Dove Medical Press Limited

                The full terms of this license are available at https://www.dovepress.com/terms.php and incorporate the Creative Commons Attribution – Non Commercial (unported, v3.0) License ( http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/3.0/). By accessing the work you hereby accept the Terms. Non-commercial uses of the work are permitted without any further permission from Dove Medical Press Limited, provided the work is properly attributed.

                Categories
                Original Research

                Anesthesiology & Pain management

                chronic fatigue, metaboreceptor, lidocaine, muscle injections

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