Spontaneous Chronic Pain After Thoracotomy Revealed by Conditioned Place Preference

“Although the same percent of the target neurons [was] eliminated as in the preoperative procedure, only half of the animals showed any recovery of the surgery-induced pain,” he said. “It appears this pathway from the RVM is more important for prevention and less important for maintenance of chronic post-operative pain. We have no idea why some recover and others don’t, which is why we need to modify our hypothesis and investigate this further.”


Lori Doan, MD, assistant professor in the department of anesthesiology, perioperative care, and pain medicine at NYU School of Medicine adds, “Many animal models are used based on the evoked hyperalgesic responses. However, chronic pain also involves a spontaneous, ongoing component of pain as well as an affective component of pain for which conditioned place preference is a measure. It’s important to model these different aspects of pain to gain a better understanding of pain mechanisms and to develop new treatments.”


1. Hung CH, et al. Spontaneous chronic pain after experimental thoracotomy revealed by conditioned place preference: Morphine differentiates tactile evoked pain from spontaneous pain. American Pain Society. 2015; 16 (9): 903-912.