Development and characterization of a novel, anatomically relevant rat model of acute postoperative pain

Bree, Dara
Moriarty, Orla
O’Mahony, Cliona M.
Morris, Bradley
Bannerton, Karen
Broom, Daniel C.
Kelly, John P.
Roche, Michelle
Finn, David P.
Bree, D,Moriarty, O,Mahony, CM,Morris, B,Bannerton, K,Broom, DC,Kelly, JP,Roche, M,Finn, DP (2015) 'Development and Characterization of a Novel, Anatomically Relevant Rat Model of Acute Postoperative Pain'. Journal Of Pain, 16 :421-435.
Acute postoperative pain remains a significant health care issue. Development of anatomically relevant animal models of postoperative pain, with improved predictive validity, would advance understanding of postoperative pain mechanisms and improve treatment outcomes. This study aimed to develop, characterize, and validate a rat model of acute postoperative pain associated with inguinal hernia repair based on the Lichtenstein inguinal hernia repair procedure (without hernia induction). We hypothesized that the surgery would result in reduced spontaneous locomotor activity, which would represent a pain-related phenotype. Postsurgical characterization involved extensive monitoring of home cage and open field locomotor activity, as well as mechanical hypersensitivity and assessment of c-Fos expression in the dorsal horn of the spinal cord. In pharmacologic validation studies, rats received morphine, carprofen, or paracetamol 1 hour before, and/or immediately after, surgery. Rats that underwent hernia repair surgery exhibited significantly lower horizontal and vertical activities in the home cage and open field in the early postsurgical period, compared with sham rats or rats that underwent skin incision only. Morphine, carprofen, and paracetamol attenuated the surgery-induced reductions in locomotor activity, to varying degrees. Surgery was associated with significantly increased c-Fos expression in the ipsilateral dorsal horn of the spinal cord, an effect attenuated by carprofen treatment. These results support the development and characterization of a novel, anatomically relevant animal model of acute postoperative pain that may facilitate development of improved treatment regimens.Perspective: Acute pain following inguinal hernia repair can be difficult to treat. Here we report, for the first time, the development of a novel, anatomically relevant rat model to facilitate improved understanding and treatment of acute postoperative pain following inguinal hernia repair. (C) 2015 by the American Pain Society
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