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Volume 42 Number 5, September/October 2005
Pages 585 — 594

Abstract - Chronicity of pain associated with spinal cord injury: A longitudinal analysis

Yenisel Cruz-Almeida, MSPH;1-2 Alberto Martinez-Arizala, MD;1-3 Eva G. Widerström-Noga, DDS, PhD1-3*

1Miami Department of Veterans Affairs Medical Center, Miami, FL; 2The Miami Project to Cure Paralysis, University of Miami School of Medicine, Miami, FL; 3Department of Neurological Surgery, University of Miami School of Medicine, Miami, FL
Abstract  — This study determined the stability of self-reported clinical pain characteristics and pain-induced interference with sleep and daily activities in people with spinal cord injury. The study followed up a previous survey that identified clinical pain patterns (i.e., neuropathic pain below the level of injury; upper-limb pain in tetraplegia; and severe, persistent pain). A confirmatory factor analysis (CFA) of the present study's data confirmed the previously observed pain patterns. The CFA also confirmed positive correlations between the surveys on individual pain characteristics (i.e., number of pain locations [r = 0.63, p < 0.001], number of descriptors [r = 0.61, p < 0.001], pain intensity [r = 0.68, p < 0.001], and temporal aspects [r = 0.47, p < 0.001]). Despite an overall stable clinical picture of pain, "aching" pain (p < 0.001) and sleep interference caused by pain (p < 0.001) significantly increased over time.
Key words: chronic disease, chronic pain, longitudinal studies, neuropathic pain, nociceptive pain, pain, pain measurement, somatosensory disorders, spinal cord injury, statistical factor analysis.

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