A revolutionary new blood test that identifies the severity of chronic pain has been developed by Australian researchers led by neuroscientist Professor Mark Hutchinson. It is the World’s first blood test that identifies the severity of chronic pain using colour biomarkers. Hutchinson is the Director of Australian Research Council Centre of Excellence for Nanoscale Biophotonics at the University of Adelaide. The new blood test dubbed “Pain HS” identifies the molecular changes in the immune cells in correlation to the severity of the pain. The colour of immune cells in a person with chronic pain is quite different from the person with no pain. The “Pain HS” test explores the natural colours of Biology to predict the severity of Chronic pain. Let us dive into the details of the new blood test.
The research team found that there are identifiable molecular changes in a person suffering from chronic pain. By using hyperspectral image analysis, these pain biomarkers can be identified instantly and helps the physician to assess the severity of the pain. The physician based on the test results can prescribe the dosage of medication needed for pain relieving. The current research paves the way for the development of new drugs to suppress the immune response associated with pain. So this could lead to the effective development of new generation of drugs that target chronic pain and eliminate the need for clinical trials.
The novel blood test comes in handy for people who are unable to express the severity of the chronic pain like babies and people who have dementia. The blood test is also believed to revolutionise the field of veterinary medicine as animals won’t be able to express the severity of the pain. So by carrying this blood test, they can be prescribed the required medication that subsides the chronic pain. However, it takes 18 months for the broader use of the test by General physicians and pain medicine physicians. This blood test will be a blessing in disguise for people suffering from pelvic pain, lower back pain, cancer pain and migraine. Professor Hutchinson still believes that this blood test is next only to self-reporting by patients, but will aid the patients who are unable to express the chronic pain. The new blood test was revealed at pain medicine conference held in Sydney (May 6).