Methods: One-hundred consecutive patients with musculoskeletal pain were included. Clinical indicators (index method) based on a combination of patient self-report pain characteristics and physical examination were used to identify the phenotype of patients with musculoskeletal pain and the predominance of the CS-related sign and symptoms. Conditioned pain modulation (CPM) was assessed by the Cold Pressor Test (reference standard), which is a psychophysical test used to detect impairment of CPM. Measurements of the diagnostic accuracy were performed.
Results: Twenty-seven patients presented predominance of CS-related sign and symptoms in the assessment of the clinical indicators, and 20 had impairment of CPM. Clinical indicators showed high accuracy (75.0%; 95% confidence interval = 65.3 to 83.1), high specificity (80.0%; 95% confidence interval = 69.6 to 88.1), high negative predictive value (87.7%; 95% confidence interval = 81.2 to 92.1), and a relevant positive likelihood ratio (2.8, 95% confidence interval = 1.5 to 5.0) when compared to the Cold Pressor Test.
Conclusion: Clinical indicators demonstrated a valuable tool for detecting the impaired CPM, which is a remarkable feature of the CS-related sign and symptoms. Clinicians are encouraged to use the clinical indicators in the management of patients with musculoskeletal pain.
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- Musculoskeletal pain
- Chronic pain
- Pain mechanisms
- Central nervous system sensitization
- iffuse noxious inhibitory control
- Pain threshold
- Pain management
- Diffuse noxious inhibitory control