Thursday, February 18, 2010

Dulling The Pain With Hot Chili Pepper

Over the years, chili peppers have been used for various pain remedy while the heat-inducing capsaicin creams are well-known for soothing muscle spasms. Today however, the spice is hot due to the research showing how capsaicin targets key pain-sensing cells in a unique way.

Pain is one major reason why many people shun surgery. And while anesthesia can do wonders in keeping a patient asleep, immobile, and out of pain during complicated surgeries, as soon as the patient wakes up, it can't do anything to curb the pain caused by cutting into the body.

Recently, scientists are experimenting to find out whether the ingredients for hot sauces can also tame surgical pain. Surgeons tried to use the substance from chili peppers straight into the affected areas such as open wounds and lacerations during painful procedures. The experiments made use of a highly concentrated form of capsaicin to avoid infection. Volunteers were placed under anesthesia so that they don't feel the initial burn.

-Ramon Bravante

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