Céline Borg 1 , 2 , 3 , Catherine Padovan 4 , 5 , Catherine Thomas-Antérion 1 , 2 , Céline Chanial 1 , Anaïs Sanchez 1 , 5 , Marion Godot 6 , Roland Peyron 1 , 6 , 7 , Odile De Parisot 5 , Bernard Laurent 1 , 6 , 7
22 January 2014
In patients, the perception of pain intensity may be influenced by the subjective representation of their disease. Although both multiple sclerosis (MS) and fibromyalgia (FM) possibly include chronic pain, they seem to elicit different disease representations because of the difference in their respective etiology, the former presenting evidence of underlying lesions as opposed to the latter. Thus, we investigated whether patients with FM differed from patients with MS with respect to their perception of “own” pain as well as others’ pain. In addition, the psychological concomitant factors associated with chronic pain were considered. Chronic pain patients with FM (n=13) or with MS (n=13) participated in this study. To assess specific pain-related features, they were contrasted with 12 other patients with MS but without chronic pain and 31 controls. A questionnaire describing imaginary painful situations showed that FM patients rated situations applied to themselves as less painful than did the controls. Additionally, pain intensity attributed to facial expressions was estimated as more intense in FM compared with the other groups of participants. There is good evidence that the mood and catastrophizing reactions expressed in FM differentially modulated the perception of pain according to whether it was their own pain or other’s pain.