Putative therapeutic targets in the treatment of visceral hyperalgesia
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The management of abdominal pain remains a major challenge for clinicians despite an explosion of knowledge regarding the physiology and pathophysiology of sensory neural circuits. Initial progress was made in the field of somatic pain and this provided broad hypotheses that could be tested in the field of visceral pain. The major advances in our understanding of basic mechanisms underlying visceral pain originated in the urinary tract and have been applied to the gut. As yet, this increased understanding of enteric sensory physiology has yet to generate new effective treatments for abdominal pain. This review addresses novel insights into peripheral mechanisms underlying visceral hyperalgesia and their applicability to the development of novel therapeutic approaches to the treatment of chronic abdominal pain.
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