Central post-stroke pain
(CPSP) is a rare neurological disorder in which the body becomes hypersensitive to pain as a result of damage to the thalamus, a part of the brain that affects sensation. Primary symptoms are pain and loss of sensation, usually in the face, arms, and/or legs. Pain or discomfort may be felt after being mildly touched or even in the absence of a stimulus; the pain may worsen by exposure to heat or cold and by emotional distress. It is caused by damage to, or dysfunction of, the central nervous system (CNS), which may be due to stroke, multiple sclerosis, tumors, epilepsy, brain or spinal cord trauma, or Parkinson's disease. Treatment typically includes pain medications to provide some reduction of pain, but complete relief of pain may not be possible. Tricyclic antidepressants or anticonvulsants can sometimes be useful. Lowering stress levels appears to reduce pain. Source: Genetic and Rare Diseases Information Center (GARD), supported by ORDR-NCATS and NHGRI.