Skip to main content
×
Home
    • Aa
    • Aa

Mental motor imagery and chronic pain: The foot laterality task

  • H. BRANCH COSLETT (a1), JARED MEDINA (a1), DASHA KLIOT (a1) and ADAM BURKEY (a2)
Abstract
Abstract

Several lines of evidence suggest that mental motor imagery is subserved by the same cognitive operations and brain structures that underlie action. Additionally, motor imagery is informed by the anticipated sensory consequences of action, including pain. We reasoned that motor imagery could provide a useful measure of chronic leg or foot pain. Forty subjects with leg pain (19 bilateral, 11 right, and 10 left leg pain), 42 subjects with chronic pain not involving the legs, and 38 controls were shown 12 different line drawings of the right or left foot and asked to indicate which foot was depicted. Previous work suggests that subjects perform this task by mentally rotating their foot to match the visually presented stimulus. All groups of subjects were slower and less accurate with stimuli that required a greater degree of mental rotation of their foot. Subjects with leg pain were both slower and less accurate than normal and pain control subjects in responding to drawings of a painful extremity. Furthermore, subjects with leg pain exhibited a significantly greater decrement in performance for stimuli that required larger amplitude mental rotations. These data suggest that motor imagery may provide important insights into the nature of the pain experience. (JINS, 2010, 16, 603–612.)

Copyright
Corresponding author
*Correspondence and reprint requests to: H. Branch Coslett, MD, Department of Neurology, Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania, 3400 Spruce St., Philadelphia, PA 19104. E-mail: hbc@mail.med.upenn.edu
Linked references
Hide All

This list contains references from the content that can be linked to their source. For a full set of references and notes please see the PDF or HTML where available.

M. Boly , M.E. Faymonville , C. Schnakers , P. Peigneux , B. Lambermont , C. Phillips , (2008). Perception of pain in the minimally conscious state with PET activation: An observational study. Lancet Neurology, 7, 10131020.

H.B. Coslett (1998). Evidence for a disturbance of the body schema in neglect. Brain Cognition, 37, 527544.

H.B. Coslett , E.M. Saffran , & J. Schwoebel (2002). Knowledge of the human body: A distinct semantic domain. Neurology, 59, 357363.

J. Decety , & M. Jeannerod (1995). Mentally simulated movements in virtual reality: Does Fitts’s law hold in motor imagery? Behavioral Brain Research, 72, 127134.

J. Decety , M. Jeannerod , D. Durozard , & G. Baverel (1993). Central activation of autonomic effectors during mental simulation of motor actions in man. Journal of Physiology, 461, 549563.

M. Fiorio , M. Tinazzi , & S.M. Aglioti (2006). Selective impairment of hand mental rotation in patients with focal hand dystonia. Brain, 129, 4754.

M. Fiorio , M. Tinazzi , S. Ionta , A. Fiaschi , G. Moretto , M.J. Edwards , . (2007). Mental rotation of body parts and non-corporeal objects in patients with idiopathic cervical dystonia. Neuropsychologia, 45, 23462354.

P.M. Fitts (1954). The information capacity of the human motor system in controlling the amplitude of movement. Journal of Experimental Psychology, 47, 381391.

B. Given , C.W. Given , A. Sikorskii , S. Jeon , R. McCorkle , V. Champion , & D. Decker (2008). Establishing mild, moderate, and severe scores for cancer-related symptoms: How consistent and clinically meaningful are interference-based severity cut-points? Journal of Pain Symptom Management, 35, 126135.

R.H. Gracely (1999). Pain measurement. Acta Anaesthesiologica Scandinavica, 43, 897908.

S.T. Grafton , M.A. Arbib , L. Fadiga , & G. Rizzolatti (1996). 1. Localization of grasp representations in humans by positron emission tomography. 2. Observation compared with imagination. Experimental Brain Research, 112, 201207.

J. Grezes , & J. Decety (2001). Functional anatomy of execution, mental simulation, observation, and verb generation of actions: A meta-analysis. Human Brain Mapping, 12, 119.

S.M. Gustin , P.J. Wrigley , S.C. Ganevia , J.W. Middleton , L.A. Henderson , & P.J. Siddal (2008). Movement imagery increases pain in people with neuropathic pain following complete thoracic spinal cord injury. Pain, 137, 237244.

M.L. Hudson , K. McCormick , N. Zalucki , & G.L. Moseley (2006). Expectation of pain replicates the effect of pain in a hand laterality task: Bias in information processing toward the painful side? European Journal of Pain, 10, 219224.

M. Jeannerod (1995). Mental imagery in the motor context. Neuropsychologia, 33, 14191432.

S. Jeon , C.W. Given , A. Sikorskii , & B. Given (2009). Do interference-based cut-points differentiate mild, moderate, and severe levels of 16 cancer-related symptoms over time? Journal of Pain Symptom Management, 37, 220232.

M. MacLachlan , D. McDonald , & J. Waloch (2004). Mirror treatment of lower limb phantom pain: A case study. Disability and Rehabilitation, 26, 901904.

P. Maruff , & D. Velakoulis (2000). The voluntary control of motor imagery. Imagined movements in individuals with feigned motor impairment and conversion disorder. Neuropsychologia, 38, 12511260.

G.L. Moseley (2004a). Why do people with Complex Regional Pain Syndrome take longer to recognize their affected hand? Neurology, 62, 21822186.

G.L. Moseley (2004b). Graded motor imagery is effective for long-standing Complex Regional Pain Syndrome. Pain, 108, 192198.

G.L. Moseley , T.J. Parsons , & C. Spence (2008). Visual distortion of a limb modulates the pain and swelling evoked by movement. Current Biology, 18, R10471048.

G.L. Moseley , & K. Wiech (2009). The effect of tactile discrimination training is enhanced when patients watch the reflected image of their unaffected limb during training. Pain, 144, 314319.

L.M. Parsons (1987a). Imagined spatial transformations of one’s hands and feet. Cognitive Psychology, 19, 178241.

L.M. Parsons (1987b). Imagined spatial transformation of one’s body. Journal of Experimental Psychology: General, 116, 172191.

V.S. Ramachandran , & D. Rogers-Ramachandran (1996). Synaesthesia in phantom limbs induced with mirrors. Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences, 263, 377386.

J. Schwoebel , C.B. Coronat , & H.B. Coslett (2002a). The man who executed “imagined” movements: Evidence for dissociable components of the body schema. Brain Cognition, 50, 116.

J. Schwoebel , & H.B. Coslett (2005). Evidence for multiple, distinct representations of the human body. Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience, 17, 543553.

J. Schwoebel , H.B. Coslett , J. Bradt , R. Friedman , & C. Dileo (2002b). Pain and the body schema: Effects of pain severity on mental representations of movement. Neurology, 59, 775777.

J. Schwoebel , R. Friedman , N. Duda , & H.B. Coslett (2001). Pain and the body schema: Evidence for peripheral effects on mental representations of movement. Brain, 124, 20982104.

J.T. Shenton , J. Schwoebel , & H.B. Coslett (2004). Mental motor imagery and the body schema: Evidence for proprioceptive dominance. Neuroscience Letters, 370, 1924.

A. Sirigu , L. Cohen , J.R. Duhamel , B. Pillon , B. Bubois , Y. Agid , & C. Pierrot-Deseilligny (1995). Congruent unilateral impairments for real and imagined hand movements. Neuroreport, 6, 9971001.

A. Sirigu , J. Grafman , K. Bressler , & T. Sunderland (1991). Multiple representations contribute to body knowledge processing. Evidence from a case of autotopagnosia. Brain, 114, 629642.

M. Valeriani , V. Betti , D. Le Pera , L. De Armas , R. Miliucci , D. Restuccia , (2008). Seeing the pain of others while being in pain: A laser-evoked potentials study. Neuroimage, 40, 14191428.

Recommend this journal

Email your librarian or administrator to recommend adding this journal to your organisation's collection.

Journal of the International Neuropsychological Society
  • ISSN: 1355-6177
  • EISSN: 1469-7661
  • URL: /core/journals/journal-of-the-international-neuropsychological-society
Please enter your name
Please enter a valid email address
Who would you like to send this to? *
×

Keywords: