New electrophysiological procedures emerged during the past years, which are able to assess the sensory nervous system on a modality-specific basis. For instance, heat-mediating nerve fibres may be selectively measured by applying short lasting standardized heat stimuli and consecutive EEG potential analyses. Laser-evoked potentials are proposed as “gold-standard” for the measurement of small fibres and were validated in various disorders with the affection of the sensory nervous system.

Laser-evoked potentials

Figure 1: Laser-evoked potentials

Our primary goal is the research and validation of new electrophysiological procedures, which are capable of selectively measuring all known nerve fiber modalities (such as cold-mediating fibres, heat-mediating fibres, warm-mediating, and mechanical pain mediating fibres). With this approach it might be possible to reveal sensory deficits in the early stage of disease, adapt early treatment, and avoid irreversible damage of the sensory system. This could improve quality of life, reduce pain and economic costs.

Main topics of the research group Pain Neurophysiology are: