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rTMS in the Treatment of Neuropathic Pain

  • Jean-Pascal LefaucheurEmail author
Chapter

Abstract

Motor cortex stimulation (MCS) using surgically implanted epidural electrodes was shown to produce pain relief in patients with chronic neuropathic pain. Repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (rTMS) is a noninvasive approach that could be used as a preoperative tool to predict MCS outcome and also could serve as a therapeutic procedure in itself to treat pain disorders. This therapeutic application requires repeated rTMS sessions every day for 1 or 2 weeks, followed by a maintenance protocol. The most studied cortical target is the precentral cortex, but other targets, especially the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex, could be of interest. The analgesic effects of cortical stimulation relate to the activation of various circuits modulating neural activities in remote structures, such as the thalamus, the limbic cortex, the insula, or descending inhibitory controls. Motor cortex rTMS as a therapeutic option in patients with neuropathic pain is supported by various sets of results with a high level of evidence statistically, but whose significance remains to be proven clinically. Also, the procedure needs to be further optimized before being fully integrated into clinical practice.

Keywords

Neuropathic Pain Motor Cortex Analgesic Effect Complex Regional Pain Syndrome Chronic Neuropathic Pain 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

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© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.EA 4391, Faculté de MédecineUniversité Paris Est CréteilCréteilFrance
  2. 2.Service de Physiologie, Explorations FonctionnellesHôpital Henri Mondor, Assistance Publique – Hôpitaux de ParisCréteilFrance

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