Neuropeptide levels in Dercum's disease (adiposis dolorosa)

  • E. Hansson | emma.hansson@med.lu.se Department of Clinical Sciences Malmö, Lund University, Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, Skåne University Hospital, Malmö, Sweden, Sweden.
  • J. Manjer Department of Clinical Sciences Malmö, Lund University, Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, Skåne University Hospital, Malmö, Sweden, Sweden.
  • H. Svensson Department of Clinical Sciences Malmö, Lund University, Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, Skåne University Hospital, Malmö, Sweden, Sweden.
  • M. Åberg Department of Clinical Sciences Malmö, Lund University, Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, Skåne University Hospital, Malmö, Sweden, Sweden.
  • B. Fagher Faculty of Medicine, Lund University, Sweden.
  • R. Ekman Institute of Clinical Neuroscience, Göteborg University, Sahlgrenska University Hospital/Mölndal, Mölndal, Sweden, Sweden.
  • H. Brorson Department of Clinical Sciences Malmö, Lund University, Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, Skåne University Hospital, Malmö, Sweden, Sweden.

Abstract

Dercum’s disease (adiposis dolorosa) is characterised by adiposity and chronic pain in the adipose tissue. It has been proposed that conditions encompassing chronic pain have altered concentrations of neuropeptides involved in pain transmission. The aim of this investigation was to examine whether patients with Dercum’s disease have abnormal concentrations of different neuropeptides. In cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) and in plasma (P) from 53 patients with Dercum’s disease substance P-like immunoreactivity (SP-LI), neuropeptide Y-like immunoreactivity (NPY-LI), b-endorphin-like immunoreactivity (b-END-LI), calcitonin gene-related peptidelike immunoreactivity (CGRP-LI), met-enkephalin-like immunoreactivity (m-ENK-LI), vasoactive intestinal polypeptide-like immunoreactivity (VIP-LI), somatostatin (SOM-LI), g2-melanocyte-stimulating hormone-like immunoreactivity (g2-MSH-LI), and dynorphin-like immunoreactivity (DYN-LI) were measured. Three of the substances were also measured in a control group. The CSF concentration of SP was statistically significantly lower in the Dercum group than in the control group, whereas NPY-LI and b-END-LI were borderline statistically significantly lower and higher, respectively, in Dercum patients compared to controls. Compared with reference values, CSF-MSH-LI levels were slightly elevated and CSF-NPY-LI levels were slightly lowered in the Dercum group. The other substances in both CSF and plasma were within the reference values with a high degree of statistical significance. In conclusion, altered levels of neuropeptides that have previously been seen in different pain conditions cannot clearly be demonstrated in Dercum’s disease.

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Author Biographies

E. Hansson, Department of Clinical Sciences Malmö, Lund University, Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, Skåne University Hospital, Malmö, Sweden
MD, MA, PhD
J. Manjer, Department of Clinical Sciences Malmö, Lund University, Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, Skåne University Hospital, Malmö, Sweden
MD, PhD
H. Svensson, Department of Clinical Sciences Malmö, Lund University, Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, Skåne University Hospital, Malmö, Sweden
MD, PhD, head of department, professor
M. Åberg, Department of Clinical Sciences Malmö, Lund University, Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, Skåne University Hospital, Malmö, Sweden
MD, PhD, associate professor
B. Fagher, Faculty of Medicine, Lund University

MD, PhD, associate professor

deceased

R. Ekman, Institute of Clinical Neuroscience, Göteborg University, Sahlgrenska University Hospital/Mölndal, Mölndal, Sweden
MD, PhD, associate professor
H. Brorson, Department of Clinical Sciences Malmö, Lund University, Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, Skåne University Hospital, Malmö, Sweden
MD, PhD, associate professor, professor hon (Argentina)
Published
2012-07-19
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Articles
Keywords:
Dercum’s disease, adiposis dolorosa, neuropeptides, chronic pain
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How to Cite
Hansson, E., Manjer, J., Svensson, H., Åberg, M., Fagher, B., Ekman, R., & Brorson, H. (2012). Neuropeptide levels in Dercum’s disease (adiposis dolorosa). Reumatismo, 64(3), 134-141. https://doi.org/10.4081/reumatismo.2012.134