For carpal tunnel syndrome sufferers, recent research proves, itching and throbbing are pain qualities most responsible for impaired functioning and sleep disruption.
The researchers hypothesized that ratings of pain quality would show significant independent associations with function interference and sleep disruption.
They anticipated that deep pain would be a pain quality with strong associations to impaired functioning.
Subjects for the study were participants in a clinical trial comparing lidocaine patch 5 percent to naproxen 500 mg. in 100 patients with carpel tunnel syndrome.
All participants were given the Brief Pain Inventory questionnaire and sleep quality was assessed using a five point rating scale.
Among the carpel tunnel patients, itch and throbbing were the pain qualities most highly associated with impaired function and sleep disruption. This finding, according to the authors, underscores the significance of assessing pain quality as a major variable for thorough pain assessments.
"Pain is much more than just intensity and unpleasantness," said lead author Dr. Mark P. Jensen.
"Knowledge of pain quality, as well as pain intensity, provides additional clues for understanding the impact of pain on patient's life," added Jensen.
The research ahs been published in The Journal of Pain.