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Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/1942/25144

Title: Association between sensorimotor impairments and functional brain changes in patients with low back pain: a critical review.
Authors: Goossens, Nina
Rummens, Sofie
Janssens, Lotte
Caeyenberghs, Karen
Brumagne, Simon
Issue Date: 2018
Citation: AMERICAN JOURNAL OF PHYSICAL MEDICINE & REHABILITATION, 97(3), p. 200-211
Abstract: Low back pain (LBP) coincides with sensorimotor impairments, e.g., reduced lumbosacral tactile and proprioceptive acuity and postural control deficits. Recent functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) studies suggest that sensorimotor impairments in LBP may be associated with brain changes. However, no consensus exists regarding the relationship between functional brain changes and sensorimotor behavior in LBP. Therefore, this review critically discusses the available fMRI studies on brain activation related to non-nociceptive somatosensory stimulation and motor performance in individuals with LBP. Four electronic databases were searched, yielding nine relevant studies. Patients with LBP showed reduced sensorimotor-related brain activation and a reorganized lumbar spine representation in higher-order (multi)sensory processing and motor regions, including primary and secondary somatosensory cortices, supplementary motor area and superior temporal gyrus. These results may support behavioral findings of sensorimotor impairments in LBP. Additionally, patients with LBP displayed widespread increased sensorimotor-evoked brain activation in regions often associated with abnormal pain processing. Over-activation in these regions could indicate an overresponsiveness to sensory inputs that signal potential harm to the spine, thereby inducing overgeneralized protective responses. Hence, functional brain changes could contribute to the development and recurrence of LBP. However, future studies investigating the causality between sensorimotor-related brain function and LBP are imperative.
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/1942/25144
DOI: 10.1097/PHM.0000000000000859
ISI #: 000426085100012
ISSN: 0894-9115
Category: A1
Type: Journal Contribution
Appears in Collections: Research publications

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