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Study: chronic back pain risk may be affected by brain structure

Chronic back pain is a truly excruciating thing. It can have many impacts on a person. It can sometimes even leave a person unable to work.

Recently, a study looked at whether a person's brain structure affects their vulnerability to developing chronic back pain. The study was recently published in "Pain," a journal.

The study's subjects were 46 individuals who, at the study's start, had been experiencing back pain for four to 16 weeks. During the study, researchers took brain scans of the subjects and also tracked whether the subjects' back pain was persisting or going away. The study went for a year.

The study's researchers found that the individuals whose pain persisted showed differences in brain structure from the individuals whose pain went away. According to the researchers, these structural differences started showing up all the way at the study's beginning.

Thus, the study's results appear to indicate that a person's brain structure has impacts on how vulnerable they are to developing chronic back pain. Learning more about what makes a person vulnerable to chronic back pain can be very valuable, as it can help medical researchers gain greater insight into chronic back pain and could perhaps help researchers in developing treatment and therapy methods for such pain. One wonders what future research will be conducted on the topic of brain structure and chronic back pain risk.

Chronic back pain is something that many individuals here in Minnesota suffer from. As we mentioned above, such pain can be very impactful.

A person who is suffering from chronic back pain and who has had their ability to work affected by such pain may have relief-seeking options available to them. For example, they may be eligible for disability benefits, such as Social Security Disability benefits. Thus, if a person has suffered a loss in the ability to work due to chronic back pain, they may wish to consider speaking with an experienced Social Security Disability benefits attorney.

Source: Los Angeles Times, "Even before injury, chronic back pain may start in the brain," Melissa Healy, Sept. 18, 2013

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