THEORIES OF PAIN PERCEPTION - the small are on opening the...

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THEORIES OF PAIN PERCEPTION 1) Gate Control Theory (Melzack & Walls, 1965) - incoming pain must pass through a "gate" located in the spinal cord which determines what information about pain will be sent to the brain. So, it can be opened to allow pain through or closed to prevent pain from being perceived. The Gate - actually a neural network controlled by the brain. Located in an area of the spinal cord called the Substansia Gelatinosa. There are two types of nerve fibers in this area: a) large - sends fast signals and can prevent pain by closing the gate. b) small - sends slower signals which open the gate. So - when pain occurs it is because the large fibers are off and
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Unformatted text preview: the small are on, opening the gate. Since the gate is controlled by the brain, he factors discussed earlier (expectations, mood, personality) influence the functioning of the gate. Contradiction to Gate Control Theory: 1) endorphins - the body's own pain killers (morphine-like). May explain acupuncture, acupressure, pain tolerance during last two weeks of pregnancy, etc. BUT- endorphins may work with the gate control theory - maybe pain is perceived, endorphins are released, so the brain no longer needs the signals and closes the gate....
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This note was uploaded on 11/14/2011 for the course PSY PSY2012 taught by Professor Scheff during the Fall '09 term at Broward College.

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