Brain Neuroanatomy



Unlike certain brain functions, the perception of pain involves multiple different areas of the brain, often working together in functional networks. As such, in order to understand how research, clinical conditions and treatments are related to brain structure and location, an overview of whole brain anatomy is essential. This chapter will commence with a summary of anatomical terms used in relation to the brain and in particular brain imaging. The basic anatomical organisation of different brain compartments will be described, followed by a description of the primary sensory pathways involved in pain perception. A more detailed look at different brainstem areas involved in pain perception and modulation will be followed by an in-depth description of the thalamic nuclei and their cortical connections. Multiple cortical and subcortical areas are involved in both the perception of pain and the response to it. The anatomical localisation of these regions will be described. Finally, the emerging concepts of different functional networks of brain regions relating to attention and emotional aspects of pain processing will be described.


Thalamic nuclei Functional anatomy Brainstem Angiography Tractography Norepinephric Raphe magnus Cortical regions 


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of NeuroradiologyNottingham University Hospitals NHS Trust, Queens Medical Centre CampusNottinghamEngland

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