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ASA Study Looks at Genetic Factors in Post-surgery Pain

Dr Brian Klagges, MD

A board-certified anesthesiologist, Dr. Brian Klagges has spent more than a decade as a pain interventionist and anesthesiologist at Elliot Hospital in Manchester, New Hampshire. Outside of his practice, Dr. Brian Klagges, MD, stays involved in his profession through membership in the American Society of Anesthesiologists (ASA).

According to research recently published by the ASA, genetics may be a contributing factor that determines if patients suffer from chronic pain after a surgical procedure. As part of their research, the study’s authors collected genetic samples from the blood of more than 1,100 patients undergoing various types of surgeries. Specifically, they were looking at the 54 genes that are most commonly believed to influence how a person senses pain.
After one year, 21 percent of patients said they had developed chronic pain, with a third of that group saying their pain was severe. In looking at the genetic factors, the study’s authors found that a variation gene known as the brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) was found to be a stronger contributing factor to the chronic pain group than other metrics like age and gender. The study can be read in whole in Anesthesiology, the peer-reviewed journal of the ASA.

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