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Bidirectional alterations in ALFF across slow-5 and slow-4 frequencies in the brains of postherpetic neuralgia patients

Authors Gu L, Hong S, Jiang J, Liu J, Cao X, Huang Q, Zeng X, Zhou F, Zhang D

Received 4 July 2018

Accepted for publication 9 November 2018

Published 18 December 2018 Volume 2019:12 Pages 39—47

DOI https://doi.org/10.2147/JPR.S179077

Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single anonymous peer review

Peer reviewer comments 2

Editor who approved publication: Dr E Alfonso Romero-Sandoval


Lili Gu,1,* Shunda Hong,2,* Jian Jiang,2 Jiaqi Liu,2 Xintian Cao,1 Qing Huang,2 Xianjun Zeng,2 Fuqing Zhou,2 Daying Zhang1

1
Department of Pain, The First Affiliated Hospital, Nanchang University, Nanchang, Jiangxi, People’s Republic of China 2Department of Radiology, The First Affiliated Hospital, Nanchang University, Nanchang, Jiangxi, People’s Republic of China

*These authors contributed equally to this work

Purpose: Postherpetic neuralgia (PHN) detrimentally affects brain function. Recent studies have suggested that frequency-dependent changes in electroencephalography in chronic pain patients and blood oxygenation level dependent (BOLD) fluctuations can reflect neuronal activity in different frequencies. The current study aimed to investigate PHN-related brain oscillatory activity in a specific frequency band by using the amplitude of low-frequency fluctuation (ALFF) method.
Materials and methods: ALFF changes were analyzed across different frequencies (slow-4 band: 0.027–0.073 Hz; slow-5 band: 0.01–0.027 Hz; and typical band: 0.01–0.08 Hz) in the brains of PHN patients and compared with those in the brains of healthy controls (HCs) during resting-state fMRI. Eighteen HCs and PHN patients underwent fMRI scanning.
Results: In the typical band, compared with HCs, PHN patients showed prominently decreased ALFF in the right prefrontal cortex (Brodmann area 10/46) and increased ALFF in the bilateral brain stem/cerebellum anterior lobe (BS/CAL). In the slow-4 band, PHN patients exhibited significantly decreased ALFF in the bilateral cuneus/lingual gyrus and the right prefrontal cortex. In the slow-5 band, PHN patients presented significantly increased ALFF in the bilateral BS/CAL and left parieto-occipital cortex. Moreover, the increased ALFF in the left parieto-occipital cortex in the slow-5 band was positively correlated with VAS scores (P=0.022), and the increased ALFF in the bilateral BS/CAL in the slow-5 band was positively correlated with disease duration (P=0.020).
Conclusion: Our results suggested that the intrinsic brain activity of PHN patients was abnormal and frequency dependent, especially the bidirectional alteration in ALFF across the slow-4 and slow-5 frequencies in the brains of PHN patients.

Keywords: amplitude of low-frequency fluctuation, postherpetic neuralgia, functional magnetic resonance imaging, resting state, pain
 

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