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Altered regional homogeneity of spontaneous brain activity in idiopathic trigeminal neuralgia

Authors Wang Y, Zhang X, Guan Q, Wan L, Yi Y, Liu C

Received 21 August 2015

Accepted for publication 17 September 2015

Published 13 October 2015 Volume 2015:11 Pages 2659—2666


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single anonymous peer review

Peer reviewer comments 3

Editor who approved publication: Professor Wai Kwong Tang

Yanping Wang,1,2 Xiaoling Zhang,2 Qiaobing Guan,2 Lihong Wan,2 Yahui Yi,2 Chun-Feng Liu1

1Department of Neurology, The Second Affiliated Hospital of Soochow University, Suzhou, Jiangsu Province, 2Department of Neurology, The Second Hospital of Jiaxing City, Jiaxing, Zhejiang Province, People’s Republic of China

Abstract: The pathophysiology of idiopathic trigeminal neuralgia (ITN) has conventionally been thought to be induced by neurovascular compression theory. Recent structural brain imaging evidence has suggested an additional central component for ITN pathophysiology. However, far less attention has been given to investigations of the basis of abnormal resting-state brain activity in these patients. The objective of this study was to investigate local brain activity in patients with ITN and its correlation with clinical variables of pain. Resting-state functional magnetic resonance imaging data from 17 patients with ITN and 19 age- and sex-matched healthy controls were analyzed using regional homogeneity (ReHo) analysis, which is a data-driven approach used to measure the regional synchronization of spontaneous brain activity. Patients with ITN had decreased ReHo in the left amygdala, right parahippocampal gyrus, and left cerebellum and increased ReHo in the right inferior temporal gyrus, right thalamus, right inferior parietal lobule, and left postcentral gyrus (corrected). Furthermore, the increase in ReHo in the left precentral gyrus was positively correlated with visual analog scale (r=0.54; P=0.002). Our study found abnormal functional homogeneity of intrinsic brain activity in several regions in ITN, suggesting the maladaptivity of the process of daily pain attacks and a central role for the pathophysiology of ITN.

Keywords: trigeminal neuralgia, resting fMRI, brain, chronic pain, local connectivity

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