Community

what is somatic pain

This term is derived from the Greek σομα, meaning body. In principle, somatic pain is pain evoked by nociceptive information arising from any of the tissues that constitute the structure of the body. These would include the bones, muscles, joints, ligaments, and tendons of the spine, the trunk, and the limbs; but technically they would include also the skull, the pachymeningeal coverings of the brain and spinal cord, and the teeth.

More explicitly, somatic pain, is used to distinguish pain that does not arise from the viscera, i.e. internal organs, of the body. Pain from those structures is referred to as Visceral Nociception and Pain. Similarly, pain from the head or skull is referred to as headache, and pain from the teeth is dental pain. Consequently, somatic pain is effectively restricted to refer to pain arising from musculoskeletal structures, the limbs, the spine, the chest wall, and the abdominal wall.