ABSTRACT: The aim of the present study was to evaluate pain perception and evoked responses by laser stimuli (LEPs) in mild not demented Huntington's Disease (HD) patients. Twenty-eight HD patients and 30 control subjects were selected. LEPs were obtained by four scalp electrodes, (Fz, Cz, referred to the nasion; T3, T4, referred to Fz), stimulating the dorsum of both hands. All patients were also evaluated by somatosensory evoked potentials (SEPs) by median nerve stimulation. Only 3 patients referred pain of arthralgic type. Laser pain perception was similar between HD patients and controls. An abnormal N2, P2 and N1 latency increase was evident in the majority of HD patients. LEPs features were similar between patients taking and not taking neuroleptics. The N2 and P2 latencies, showed a negative correlation with functional score and Mini Mental State Examination, and a positive correlation with the severity of hyperkinetic movements. A delay in nociceptive input processing emerged in HD, concurring with the main features of the disease, in absence of clinical evidence of abnormalities in pain perception. The dysfunction of pain signals transmission in HD may induce sub-clinical changes of sensory functions, which may probably interfere with sensory-motor integration and contribute to functional impairment.
Acta neurologica Belgica 03/2011; 111(1):33-40. · 0.54 Impact Factor