A study that measured brain wave responses to short laser pulses to the skin found that activity increased in the insula cortex, which is linked to body perception and emotional processing, when pain was anticipated. The University of Manchester study, which sought to analyze pain overlaps in patients with fibromyalgia and osteoarthritis, found brain responses in the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex were reduced when pain was anticipated, which may be linked to a lower ability to cope with pain. The findings were reported in the European Journal of Neuroscience.

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