Encyclopedia of Pain

2007 Edition

Anesthesia Dolorosa Model, Autotomy

  • Marshall Devor
Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-540-29805-2_212


Model of Spontaneous Neuropathic Pain; Neuroma Model of Neuropathic Pain; Denervation Model of Neuropathic Pain; deafferentation model of neuropathic pain; autotomy model of neuropathic pain


“Anesthesia dolorosa” (“painful numbness”) is a seemingly paradoxical chronic pain state in which, despite the presence of ongoing pain, the painful body part is completely numb and insensate. Applied stimuli are not felt. To create this state in animals a limb is made insensate by either: 1) cutting all peripheral nerves that serve it ( denervation), or 2) cutting the corresponding dorsal roots ( deafferentation). Hence the animal model of anesthesia dolorosa is actually a family of models. The presence of ongoing pain is inferred from the observation of “ autotomy” behavior or its consequences. Autotomy is a behavior pattern in which the animal licks, bites and chews its denervated limb (self mutilation). Quantification is usually based on the amount of tissue lost from the...

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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2007

Authors and Affiliations

  • Marshall Devor
    • 1
  1. 1.Institute of Life Sciences and Center for Research on PainHebrew University of JerusalemJerusalemIsrael