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Sympathetic Fiber Growth Linked to Arthritic Pain

An article in The Journal of Neuroscience connects “a sprouting of autonomic sympathetic fibers into the upper dermis of the skin” following joint inflammation with some of the pain associated with arthritis. Researchers found that “the pharmacological suppression of sympathetic fiber function with systemic guanethidine” significantly lessened pain-related behavior from arthritis and “suppressed the heat hyperalgesia and attenuated mechanical and cold hypersensitivity.” The study concludes that “blocking the sympathetic fiber sprouting may provide a novel therapeutic approach to alleviate pain in arthritis.”

Read the study in The Journal of Neuroscience.