Effects of gender and acute dental pain on thermal pain responses

Robert R. Edwards, Roger B. Fillingim, Shizuko Yamauchi, Asgeir Sigurdsson, Shelley Bunting, Stephen G. Mohorn, William Maixner

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Objective: Considerable research suggests that females exhibit greater sensitivity to laboratory pain procedures than do males; however, whether the presence of acute clinical pain influences this sex difference in pain sensitivity has not been investigated. The present experiment investigated the effects of sex and acute dental pain on laboratory pain responses. Design: Thermal pain onset and tolerance were determined in 46 dental patients (15 male, 31 female) experiencing pain due to acute irreversible pulpitis and in 33 healthy controls (13 male, 20 female). In addition, measures of mood and coping were obtained in all participants. All subjects participated in two experimental sessions. The first session took place immediately before the patients underwent endodontic treatment for relief of pulpal pain. The second session took place approximately 1-2 weeks later, when pulpitis patients were pain free after treatment. During each session, thermal pain onset and tolerance were assessed with a 1-cm2 contact thermode applied to the right volar forearm using an ascending method of limits. Results: During both sessions, thermal pain onset and tolerance were lower in control females than in control males; however, male and female pulpitis patients did not differ in their thermal pain responses during either session. Pulpitis patients also showed greater affective distress than controls. Conclusions: These data suggest that the sex difference in thermal pain sensitivity frequently reported in pain-free subjects appears to be absent in patients presenting with acute dental pain. However, this effect cannot be explained solely based on the presence of clinical pain because the effect on pain threshold and tolerance persisted into session 2, when pulpitis patients were pain free. Potential explanations for these results are discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)233-237
Number of pages5
JournalClinical Journal of Pain
Volume15
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 1999
Externally publishedYes

Fingerprint

Acute Pain
Tooth
Hot Temperature
Pulpitis
Pain
Sex Characteristics
Pain Threshold
Endodontics
Forearm

Keywords

  • Dental pain
  • Gender
  • Pain threshold
  • Pain tolerance
  • Sex

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Anesthesiology and Pain Medicine
  • Clinical Neurology

Cite this

Edwards, R. R., Fillingim, R. B., Yamauchi, S., Sigurdsson, A., Bunting, S., Mohorn, S. G., & Maixner, W. (1999). Effects of gender and acute dental pain on thermal pain responses. Clinical Journal of Pain, 15(3), 233-237. https://doi.org/10.1097/00002508-199909000-00011

Effects of gender and acute dental pain on thermal pain responses. / Edwards, Robert R.; Fillingim, Roger B.; Yamauchi, Shizuko; Sigurdsson, Asgeir; Bunting, Shelley; Mohorn, Stephen G.; Maixner, William.

In: Clinical Journal of Pain, Vol. 15, No. 3, 09.1999, p. 233-237.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Edwards, RR, Fillingim, RB, Yamauchi, S, Sigurdsson, A, Bunting, S, Mohorn, SG & Maixner, W 1999, 'Effects of gender and acute dental pain on thermal pain responses', Clinical Journal of Pain, vol. 15, no. 3, pp. 233-237. https://doi.org/10.1097/00002508-199909000-00011
Edwards RR, Fillingim RB, Yamauchi S, Sigurdsson A, Bunting S, Mohorn SG et al. Effects of gender and acute dental pain on thermal pain responses. Clinical Journal of Pain. 1999 Sep;15(3):233-237. https://doi.org/10.1097/00002508-199909000-00011
Edwards, Robert R. ; Fillingim, Roger B. ; Yamauchi, Shizuko ; Sigurdsson, Asgeir ; Bunting, Shelley ; Mohorn, Stephen G. ; Maixner, William. / Effects of gender and acute dental pain on thermal pain responses. In: Clinical Journal of Pain. 1999 ; Vol. 15, No. 3. pp. 233-237.
@article{29c0f83254da43da92b066b7d39bd198,
title = "Effects of gender and acute dental pain on thermal pain responses",
abstract = "Objective: Considerable research suggests that females exhibit greater sensitivity to laboratory pain procedures than do males; however, whether the presence of acute clinical pain influences this sex difference in pain sensitivity has not been investigated. The present experiment investigated the effects of sex and acute dental pain on laboratory pain responses. Design: Thermal pain onset and tolerance were determined in 46 dental patients (15 male, 31 female) experiencing pain due to acute irreversible pulpitis and in 33 healthy controls (13 male, 20 female). In addition, measures of mood and coping were obtained in all participants. All subjects participated in two experimental sessions. The first session took place immediately before the patients underwent endodontic treatment for relief of pulpal pain. The second session took place approximately 1-2 weeks later, when pulpitis patients were pain free after treatment. During each session, thermal pain onset and tolerance were assessed with a 1-cm2 contact thermode applied to the right volar forearm using an ascending method of limits. Results: During both sessions, thermal pain onset and tolerance were lower in control females than in control males; however, male and female pulpitis patients did not differ in their thermal pain responses during either session. Pulpitis patients also showed greater affective distress than controls. Conclusions: These data suggest that the sex difference in thermal pain sensitivity frequently reported in pain-free subjects appears to be absent in patients presenting with acute dental pain. However, this effect cannot be explained solely based on the presence of clinical pain because the effect on pain threshold and tolerance persisted into session 2, when pulpitis patients were pain free. Potential explanations for these results are discussed.",
keywords = "Dental pain, Gender, Pain threshold, Pain tolerance, Sex",
author = "Edwards, {Robert R.} and Fillingim, {Roger B.} and Shizuko Yamauchi and Asgeir Sigurdsson and Shelley Bunting and Mohorn, {Stephen G.} and William Maixner",
year = "1999",
month = "9",
doi = "10.1097/00002508-199909000-00011",
language = "English (US)",
volume = "15",
pages = "233--237",
journal = "Clinical Journal of Pain",
issn = "0749-8047",
publisher = "Lippincott Williams and Wilkins",
number = "3",

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - Effects of gender and acute dental pain on thermal pain responses

AU - Edwards, Robert R.

AU - Fillingim, Roger B.

AU - Yamauchi, Shizuko

AU - Sigurdsson, Asgeir

AU - Bunting, Shelley

AU - Mohorn, Stephen G.

AU - Maixner, William

PY - 1999/9

Y1 - 1999/9

N2 - Objective: Considerable research suggests that females exhibit greater sensitivity to laboratory pain procedures than do males; however, whether the presence of acute clinical pain influences this sex difference in pain sensitivity has not been investigated. The present experiment investigated the effects of sex and acute dental pain on laboratory pain responses. Design: Thermal pain onset and tolerance were determined in 46 dental patients (15 male, 31 female) experiencing pain due to acute irreversible pulpitis and in 33 healthy controls (13 male, 20 female). In addition, measures of mood and coping were obtained in all participants. All subjects participated in two experimental sessions. The first session took place immediately before the patients underwent endodontic treatment for relief of pulpal pain. The second session took place approximately 1-2 weeks later, when pulpitis patients were pain free after treatment. During each session, thermal pain onset and tolerance were assessed with a 1-cm2 contact thermode applied to the right volar forearm using an ascending method of limits. Results: During both sessions, thermal pain onset and tolerance were lower in control females than in control males; however, male and female pulpitis patients did not differ in their thermal pain responses during either session. Pulpitis patients also showed greater affective distress than controls. Conclusions: These data suggest that the sex difference in thermal pain sensitivity frequently reported in pain-free subjects appears to be absent in patients presenting with acute dental pain. However, this effect cannot be explained solely based on the presence of clinical pain because the effect on pain threshold and tolerance persisted into session 2, when pulpitis patients were pain free. Potential explanations for these results are discussed.

AB - Objective: Considerable research suggests that females exhibit greater sensitivity to laboratory pain procedures than do males; however, whether the presence of acute clinical pain influences this sex difference in pain sensitivity has not been investigated. The present experiment investigated the effects of sex and acute dental pain on laboratory pain responses. Design: Thermal pain onset and tolerance were determined in 46 dental patients (15 male, 31 female) experiencing pain due to acute irreversible pulpitis and in 33 healthy controls (13 male, 20 female). In addition, measures of mood and coping were obtained in all participants. All subjects participated in two experimental sessions. The first session took place immediately before the patients underwent endodontic treatment for relief of pulpal pain. The second session took place approximately 1-2 weeks later, when pulpitis patients were pain free after treatment. During each session, thermal pain onset and tolerance were assessed with a 1-cm2 contact thermode applied to the right volar forearm using an ascending method of limits. Results: During both sessions, thermal pain onset and tolerance were lower in control females than in control males; however, male and female pulpitis patients did not differ in their thermal pain responses during either session. Pulpitis patients also showed greater affective distress than controls. Conclusions: These data suggest that the sex difference in thermal pain sensitivity frequently reported in pain-free subjects appears to be absent in patients presenting with acute dental pain. However, this effect cannot be explained solely based on the presence of clinical pain because the effect on pain threshold and tolerance persisted into session 2, when pulpitis patients were pain free. Potential explanations for these results are discussed.

KW - Dental pain

KW - Gender

KW - Pain threshold

KW - Pain tolerance

KW - Sex

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=0032881536&partnerID=8YFLogxK

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/citedby.url?scp=0032881536&partnerID=8YFLogxK

U2 - 10.1097/00002508-199909000-00011

DO - 10.1097/00002508-199909000-00011

M3 - Article

C2 - 10524477

AN - SCOPUS:0032881536

VL - 15

SP - 233

EP - 237

JO - Clinical Journal of Pain

JF - Clinical Journal of Pain

SN - 0749-8047

IS - 3

ER -