Some preliminary experiments on the mutual influence of pains
Ein Schmerz A schwächt einen in deutlichem Raumabstand gegebenen gleichzeitigen Schmerz P nach Maßgabe seiner relativen Intensität. Ein scharfes, eindringliches Geräusch oder eine intensive Muskelanstrengung wirken ähnlich. P wird stärker beeinflußt, wenn A noch “neu” oder (zeitlich) “Figur” gegenüber P ist. All dies deutet auf die “Dringlichkeit” von A als entscheidenden Faktor. Die Druckkomponente von P wird, wenn überhaupt, weniger beeinflußt als die Schmerzkomponente.
Weder Ablenkung der “Aufmerksamkeit” noch “Kontrast” (beides im üblichen Sinn) sind verantwortlich zu machen, und da kein Wettbewerb um die gleiche Bahn in Frage kommt, liegt auch nicht “Maskierung” (neurologisch verstanden) vor. Die Anzeichen sprechen für eine Veränderung zentraler Empfindlichkeit als Folge einer Verlagerung des Dringlichkeitszentrums.
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- 1.Head, Henry: Studies in Neurology, pp. 59, 259. London 1920. — Their findings about the sensibility to pain in “protopathic” areas show that the pain-threshold may be raised while at the same time the supraliminal pain is markedly increased. This amounts to saying that the limen is no measure of sensibility in general but only of sensibility to liminal stimuli — a finding which has its parallels in other fields of sensation.Google Scholar
- 2.A similar method has for example been used byC. Stumpf in determining the loudness of sounds [cf. Sitzgsber. preuß. Akad. Wiss.17 (1918)].Google Scholar
- 1.It goes without saying that the designation of a pain as “passive” is arbitrary in so far as it depends upon what pain was chosen for observation.Google Scholar
- 1.If I had been more interested in adaptation of pain, it would have been wiser to use pains with less pronounced pressure-components. — On adaptation s. e. g.Burns andDallenbach: Amer. J. Psychol.45 (1933).Google Scholar
- 1.A similar mutual independence of pain and its neutral concomitant (especially warmth) has recently been found in experiments on “habituation”, cf.K. Wilde: Zur Phänomenologie des Wärmeschmerzes. Psychol. Forsch.20 (1935).Google Scholar
- 1.The same dependence upon intensity, i. e. upon the relation between the intensities of A and P, was clearly brought out in another set of experiments, conducted on 8 subjects, where the quotient A/P ranged between 8 and 0.3. In these experiments A and P were applied simultaneously for the same length of time (3–4 seconds), i. e. A did not “break in upon” P. Besides both were caused by much sharper nails. — Since the results did not in any essential respect differ from those of table 1, I refrained from presenting them in detail.Google Scholar
- 2.This was also observed in some preliminary experiments.Google Scholar
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- 1.Note that, in terms of differences, a — sign means a rise and a +sign a drop. Thus the many — signs signify a general rise upon which A's effect on P is “super-imposed”.Google Scholar
- 1.The tendency of the effect to decrease with repetitions has already shown itself in table I.Google Scholar
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