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Unilateral Neurogenic Pruritus: Paroxysmal Itching Associated with Central Nervous System Lesions

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▸Requests for reprints should be addressed to Joseph L. Jorizzo, M.D.; University of Texas Medical Branch; Galveston, TX 77550.

University of Texas Medical Branch; Galveston, Texas .

Ann Intern Med. 1982;97(2):222-223. doi:10.7326/0003-4819-97-2-222
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The neurophysiologic basis of pruritus has not been fully established. It is known to be mediated by cutaneous receptors and peripheral nerve fibers similar to those mediating pain (1). Clinical and experimental observations (2, 3) have led to a hypothesis that the central projections from spinal cord to cerebral cortex are similar for pain and pruritus. Spinal tracts mediating pain perception terminate primarily in the thalamus, from which fibers traverse the posterior limb of the internal capsule and end in the parietal cortex (4).

Although pruritus has been associated with spinal cord lesions (5), to our knowledge there are no


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