Friday, December 18, 2009

Peripheral Neuropathy .

Peripheral Neuropathy .
Andre Willers
18 Dec 2009

Synopsis :
Chronic neuropathy results from the inability to activate the "Off" switch in microglial and astrocyte bodies in the dorsal root ganglion .
See Scientific American Nov 2009 p 33 .

Discussion .

These bodies monitor the frequencies of pulses of neurotransmitters from the neuron . If there is neural damage (like with acrylamide cf) , they detect this and increase the sensitivity of the neurons , while also releasing cytokines and some interleukins for repairs . (ie inflammatory response .)

The "Off"-switch for these systems could do with some redesign .
The off-switch is related to the percussive frequency of the heartbeat . And this has harmonics with the length of the spine . And this changes with posture .

The percussion changes the densities of fluid inside the dorsal ganglion , influencing the pulses of neurotransmitters . Note that microglia are responsible for re-uptake of neurotransmitters . Cf prozac. Cf yoga .

If they kick in , fewer neurotransmitters are recycled . Boosting the signal .

If the heartbeat returns to normal , fine .

But , stress .

The kicker is the length of the spine .

This changes the resonances inside the dorsal root ganglion . The microglia and astrocytes do not switch off . Neural sensitivity is enhanced , and typical peripheral neuropathy symptoms ensue .
Like when you lie down to sleep .

What to do .

1."Put a bolster under the bum , mum ."
Compress the spine mildly by putting a cushion under the bum , while having high cushions for the upper torso . This enables the off-switch .
This actually works . (like sitting in small gravity)

Percussions , either by mouth , or mechanical , can modify synapse responses .
Cf all those relaxing massages .
Some skill needed .

3.Retrain the system .
Even more skill needed .

A note on the Gate-theory of Pain .
Using something like capsaicum is a very short-term solution . From the argument above , the system will habituate as the microglials and astrocytes compensate for the storm of incoming signals .
Ditto for more powerful pain stillers .

Some intriguing speculations:
1.Phantom limb pain .
Try compressing the limb in imagination . The chronic pain switches should then at least have a chance of switching off .
Do it even with existing limbs .

2.Alcohol .
The energy systems powering the microglials have the same imperatives as the rest of the mitochondria : alcohol has to be metabolized first .
A prolonged pulse of alcohol then causes an absence of pain . The pulses simply do not happen , and upstream consequences in the amygdala does not occur .

This causes an interrupt/reset in the microglial system . Which is why it so popular with humans .

The microglial system is the memory of pain . A little bit is good , but too much leads to learned helplessness and catatonia .
And the off-switch is interrupted by lying down .

Delicious !

Shaken or stirred .

Andre .

No comments: