Unraveling the Nature of Impaired Pain Inhibition in Patients With Chronic Whiplash-associated Disorders

This study has been completed.
Sponsor:
Information provided by (Responsible Party):
Kelly Ickmans, Vrije Universiteit Brussel
ClinicalTrials.gov Identifier:
NCT01601912
First received: May 14, 2012
Last updated: January 13, 2014
Last verified: January 2014
  Purpose

The primary study aim is to unravel the nature of impaired pain inhibition during exercise in patients with chronic Whiplash-Associated Disorders (WAD). This will be ascertained by examining whether activation of serotonergic and/or noradrenergic descending pathways improves pain inhibition during exercise in these patients. In addition, it is aimed at examining whether activation of serotonergic and/or noradrenergic descending pathways prevents post-exertional malaise following submaximal exercise in chronic WAD patients. A secondary study aim comprises of examining the effect of an acute submaximal exercise with and without activation of serotonergic or noradrenergic descending pathways on chronic WAD patients' cognitive performance. Furthermore, the isolated effect of activated serotonergic and noradrenergic descending pathways on chronic WAD patients' cognitive performance will be studied.


Condition Intervention Phase
Whiplash Injuries
Drug: Atomoxetine
Drug: Citalopram
Phase 4

Study Type: Observational
Study Design: Observational Model: Case Control
Time Perspective: Cross-Sectional
Official Title: Unraveling the Nature of Impaired Pain Inhibition in Patients With Chronic Whiplash-associated Disorders: a Randomized Controlled Clinical Trial for the Treatment of Central Sensitization

Resource links provided by NLM:


Further study details as provided by Vrije Universiteit Brussel:

Primary Outcome Measures:
  • Changes in pain inhibition [ Time Frame: Baseline before and after the submaximal graded exercise= day 1 A & B, after first intervention before and after the submaximal graded exercise= day 8 A & B, after second intervention before and after the submaximal graded exercise = day 15 A & B ] [ Designated as safety issue: No ]
    To investigate pain inhibition, a combination of temporal en spatial summation will be used on the example of Cathcart et al. (2009). Temporal summation is applied by using an analogue Wagner pressure algometer and spatial summation is induced by causing ischemic pain with an inflatable cuff.

  • Changes in psychomotor vigilance and alertness [ Time Frame: Baseline before and after the submaximal graded exercise= day 1 A & B, after first intervention before and after the submaximal graded exercise= day 8 A & B, after second intervention before and after the submaximal graded exercise = day 15 A & B ] [ Designated as safety issue: No ]
    To investigate cognitive function we used the Psychomotor Vigilance Task (PVT) which is a 10-minute test.

  • Changes in selective attention and executive function [ Time Frame: Baseline before and after the submaximal graded exercise= day 1 A & B, after first intervention before and after the submaximal graded exercise= day 8 A & B, after second intervention before and after the submaximal graded exercise = day 15 A & B ] [ Designated as safety issue: No ]
    The Stroop task is used to assess selective attention and executive function


Secondary Outcome Measures:
  • Change in scores on the Neck Disability Index questionnaire [ Time Frame: Baseline = day 1, after the first intervention = day 8, after the second intervention = day 15 ] [ Designated as safety issue: No ]
    The NDI was developed as a modification of the Oswestry Back Pain Index and was the first instrument designed to assess self-rated disability in patients with neck pain. The NDI is a valid and reliable instrument, sensitive to measure changes within a population of patients with neck pain.

  • Change in scores on the Brief Pain Inventory questionnaire [ Time Frame: Baseline = day 1, after the first intervention = day 8, after the second intervention = day 15 ] [ Designated as safety issue: No ]
    The BPI - short form includes 8 questions about one's pain levels and location in the body, and 7 questions about the daily interferences due to pain and it is sensitive to brief therapeutic interventions.

  • Changes in the scores on the Whiplash Associated Disorders Symptom list [ Time Frame: Day 1 pre and post submaximal graded exercise and 24h after exercise = day 1 A,B&C, day 8 pre and post submaximal graded exercise & 24h after exercise = day 8 A,B&C, day 15 pre and post submaximal graded exercise & 24h after exercise = day 15 A,B&C ] [ Designated as safety issue: No ]
    This is a self-reported measure for assessing symptom severity in patients with WAD. The questionnaire is composed of the most reported WAD symptoms in the literature and some autonomic symptoms. Every symptom is presented by a visual analog scale (VAS) (100 mm), a method that is known for its validity and reliability.


Enrollment: 59
Study Start Date: February 2013
Study Completion Date: December 2013
Primary Completion Date: December 2013 (Final data collection date for primary outcome measure)
Groups/Cohorts Assigned Interventions
Atomoxetine NRI
We will modulate endogenous adrenergic pain inhibitory mechanisms by using a selective norepinephrine reuptake inhibitor (NRI).
Drug: Atomoxetine
40 mg, 1 application
Other Name: Strattera (Eli Lilly Nederland B.V)
Citalopram SSRI
We will modulate serotonergic pain inhibitory mechanisms by using a selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI)
Drug: Citalopram
20 mg, 1 application
Other Name: Citalopram Sandoz (Sandoz N.V.)

Detailed Description:

Chronic Whiplash-Associated Disorders (WAD) is a debilitating, costly condition, and remains a challenge for clinicians, including physicians, rehabilitation specialists and physiotherapists. There is now consistent evidence for central sensitization in people with chronic WAD. In a previous study in chronic WAD patients, our group showed that pain inhibition during exercise is impaired and that a submaximal exercise triggers a severe relapse named post-exertional malaise. On the other hand, imbalance of serotonin (5-HT) and norepinephrine (NE) is likely to be responsible for malfunctioning of pain inhibitory pathways. Indeed, NE is required for activation of descending noradrenergic pathways with established nociceptive inhibitory properties. Serotonin reuptake inhibitor drugs activate serotonergic descending pathways that recruit, in part, opioid peptide-containing interneurons in the dorsal horn. It becomes more and more clear that the lack of pain inhibition accounts in part for various symptoms at rest and following exercise in particular (post-exertional malaise). However, the mechanisms behind the lack of pain inhibition during exercise remain to be revealed. Besides the lack of endogenous pain inhibition during exercise in people with chronic WAD, there appears to be sufficient evidence to support the presence of impaired cognitive function in chronic pain patients in general and preliminary evidence in chronic WAD patients in particular.

The present study aimed at examining whether activation of serotonergic and/or noradrenergic descending pathways improves pain inhibition during exercise in chronic WAD patients. In addition, it is aimed at examining whether activation of serotonergic and/or noradrenergic descending pathways prevents post-exertional malaise following submaximal exercise in these patients. A secondary study aim comprises of examining the effect of an acute submaximal exercise with and without activation of serotonergic or noradrenergic descending pathways on chronic WAD patients' cognitive performance. Furthermore, the isolated effect of activated serotonergic and noradrenergic descending pathways on chronic WAD patients' cognitive performance will be studied.We will modulate endogenous serotonergic and adrenergic pain inhibitory mechanisms by using a selective NE reuptake inhibitor (NRI) and a selective 5-HT reuptake inhibitor (SSRI). Endogenous pain inhibition and cognitive function (sustained and selective attention, and executive function) will be studied at rest and in response to exercise (1) under baseline condition, (2) after the intake of a NRI (Atomoxetine), and (3) after the intake of a SSRI (Citalopram).

  Eligibility

Ages Eligible for Study:   18 Years to 65 Years
Genders Eligible for Study:   Both
Accepts Healthy Volunteers:   Yes
Sampling Method:   Probability Sample
Study Population

WAD patients: primary care clinic & community sample Healthy people: community sample

Criteria

Inclusion Criteria for patients:

  • WAD grades I to III according to the Quebec Task Force criteria
  • experienced a whiplash trauma at least three months ago
  • with chronic pain as a result of a whiplash injury
  • 18-65 years of age and with Dutch as their native language will be able to participate

Exclusion Criteria for patients:

  • other comorbidities or health issues that could explain the pain complaints
  • < 18years > 65 years
  • pregnant or until 1 year postnatal (for women)
  • use of anti-depressive, anti-epileptic and pain medication.

Inclusion Criteria for healthy volunteers:

  • 18-65 years of age and with Dutch as their native language will be able to participate
  • having a sedentary job and doing < 3 h moderate physical activity/week
  • being painfree without any chronic disease

Exclusion Criteria for healthy volunteers:

  • < 18years > 65 years
  • pregnant or until 1 year postnatal (for women)
  • use of anti-depressive, anti-epileptic and pain medication.
  Contacts and Locations
Please refer to this study by its ClinicalTrials.gov identifier: NCT01601912

Locations
Belgium
Universitair Ziekenhuis Brussel
Brussels, Belgium, 1090
Sponsors and Collaborators
Vrije Universiteit Brussel
Investigators
Study Director: Jo Nijs, PhD Vrije Universiteit Brussel
  More Information

Publications:
Responsible Party: Kelly Ickmans, MSc, Vrije Universiteit Brussel
ClinicalTrials.gov Identifier: NCT01601912     History of Changes
Other Study ID Numbers: WFWG-22
Study First Received: May 14, 2012
Last Updated: January 13, 2014
Health Authority: Belgium: Ethics Committee
Belgium: Federal Agency for Medicinal Products and Health Products

Keywords provided by Vrije Universiteit Brussel:
Whiplash Injuries
Chronic Pain
Exercise
Cognition

Additional relevant MeSH terms:
Whiplash Injuries
Wounds and Injuries
Neck Injuries
Citalopram
Serotonin Uptake Inhibitors
Dexetimide
Atomoxetine
Antidepressive Agents, Second-Generation
Antidepressive Agents
Psychotropic Drugs
Central Nervous System Agents
Therapeutic Uses
Pharmacologic Actions
Neurotransmitter Uptake Inhibitors
Neurotransmitter Agents
Molecular Mechanisms of Pharmacological Action
Serotonin Agents
Physiological Effects of Drugs
Antiparkinson Agents
Anti-Dyskinesia Agents
Parasympatholytics
Autonomic Agents
Peripheral Nervous System Agents
Muscarinic Antagonists
Cholinergic Antagonists
Cholinergic Agents
Adrenergic Uptake Inhibitors
Adrenergic Agents

ClinicalTrials.gov processed this record on April 17, 2014