Functional Imaging of Light-Induced Activation of Pain-Related Circuitry in Fibromyalgia as a Marker for Central Sensitization

Principal Investigator

Kimberly Mauer

Study Purpose

Pain is definied as a sensory experience that under normal conditions is evoked by inury to bodily tissue. Our understanding of acute pain is relatively advanced. Our chronic pain understanding is limited, especially in the area of fibromyalgia.

This study is designed to unmask brain changes (central sensitization) that are thought to be instrumental to teh development and progression of chronic pain. The goal of this study is to use light sensitivity as a marker for these brain changes. Because of these changes, patients with fibromyalgia, a chronic pain syndrome of unknown cause, are likely to be more sensitive to light than healthy subjects. Thus, the goal will be to compare photosensitivity of fibromyalgia patients with that of healthy controls. We will use the light that was found bothersome in our previous study and scan patients with that light level.

Medical Condition(s)

Conditions studied will include 2 fibromyalgia patients and 2 normal subjects.

Eligibility Criteria

Eligibility criteria include female patients with fibromyalgia that do not have any contraindications to be in an MRI scanner. These contraindications include pregnancy, any type of metal implants contraindicated in an MRI scanner, anxiety or panic disorder that would preclude a patient from being able to be in the MRI scanner.

Age Range

18 - 75

Healthy Volunteers Needed


Duration of Participation

1 MRI scan that will last 1 1/2 to 2 hours.

Minors Included



Through our Comprehensive Pain Management Center at OHSU and the Fibromyalgia Clinic which is part of the rheumatology clinic at OHSU.


Recruitment End


Compensation Provided



$100 per subject.

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