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PReS13-SPK-1575: Science of pain amplification

Pain perception is subject to powerful modulatory influences that can increase or reduce subjective responses in the short and long term. Nociceptive circuits can become sensitised causing both innocuous and noxious inputs to be amplified and their intensity and other sensory characteristics to be increased. Both central and peripheral mechanisms of sensitisation are recognised. Nociceptive mechanisms are immature at birth, undergoing both structural and functional change during normal development that can have important consequences for the maintenance, management and prognosis of chronic pain in children.

The neurophysiology of pain in children will be briefly described with special reference to sensitisation in the context of non-inflammatory musculoskeletal pain and pain amplification syndromes. A mechanisms based approach to the medical management of chronic pain in children will be discussed.

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This article is published under license to BioMed Central Ltd. This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. The Creative Commons Public Domain Dedication waiver ( applies to the data made available in this article, unless otherwise stated.

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Howard, R. PReS13-SPK-1575: Science of pain amplification. Pediatr Rheumatol 11 (Suppl 2), I35 (2013).

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