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Effect of propranolol and granisetron on experimentally induced pain and allodynia/hyperalgesia by intramuscular injection of serotonin into the human masseter muscle.

Author(s): Ernberg M, Lundeberg T, Kopp S

Affiliation(s): Department of Clinical Oral Physiology, Karolinska Institutet, Stockholm, Sweden. malin.ernberg@ofa.ki.se

Publication date & source: 2000-02, Pain., 84(2-3):339-46.

Publication type: Clinical Trial; Randomized Controlled Trial

We have previously reported that intramuscular injection of serotonin (5-HT) into the masseter muscle elicits pain and allodynia/hyperalgesia in healthy subjects. The aim of this study was to investigate whether the 5-HT(3) receptor antagonist granisetron or 5-HT(1A) receptor antagonist propranolol can reduce 5-HT induced pain and allodynia/hyperalgesia in the masseter muscle. Twenty-four healthy individuals (12 males and 12 females) without pain from the masseter muscle region participated. They were examined clinically including tenderness to digital palpation (TDP) and pressure pain threshold (PPT) of the masseter muscle. 5-HT in combination with granisetron or propranolol was randomly injected on one side in a double-blind manner. 5-HT in combination with saline was used on the contralateral side. After the injections the pain intensity and PPT were recorded 10 times during 30min. After the last recording the TDP was assessed again. The injections were repeated with the other antagonist within 1 week. All three combinations of substances elicited pain after injection, which lasted for 5-8min. 5-HT induced significantly more pain than granisetron+5-HT and propranolol+5-HT. The TDP increased significantly after injection of all combinations of substances, but there was no significant difference between them. The PPT decreased significantly after injection of 5-HT and increased significantly after injection of granisetron+5-HT, while it did not change significantly after injection of propranolol+5-HT. The difference between 5-HT and granisetron+5-HT was significant. In conclusion, the results of this study indicate that injection of granisetron and propranolol into the human masseter muscle reduces pain induced by local administration of 5-HT, but that the effect of granisetron is stronger than that of propranolol. In addition, granisetron totally abolishes allodynia/hyperalgesia.

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