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Journal of Neurorestoratology

Keywords

phantom limb pain (PLP), platelet-rich plasma, chronic pain, amputation

Abstract

About 0.5% of the US population (1.7 million) is living with a lost limb and this number is expected to double by 2050. This number is much higher in other parts of the world. Within days to weeks of an extremity amputation, up to 80% of these individuals develop neuropathic pain presenting as phantom limb pain (PLP). The level of PLP increases significantly by one year and remains chronic and severe for about 10% of individuals. PLP has a serious negative impact on individuals’ lives. Current pain treatment therapies, such pharmacological approaches provide limited to no pain relief, some other techniques applied to the central nervous system (CNS) and peripheral nervous system (PNS) reduce or block PLP, but none produces long-term pain suppression. Therefore, new drugs or novel analgesic methods must be developed that prevent PLP from developing, or if it develops, to reduce the level of pain. This paper examines the potential causes of PLP, and present techniques used to prevent the development of PLP, or if it develops, to reduce the level of pain. Finally it presents a novel technique being developed that eliminates/reduces chronic neuropathic pain and which may induce the long-term reduction/elimination of PLP.

Publisher

Tsinghua University Press

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