What is Referred Pain?

Referred pain is a type of pain that is felt in a part of the body that is different from the actual source of the pain. For example, pain in the left arm may be referred from a problem in the heart, or pain in the jaw may be referred from a problem in the teeth or gums.

This happens because the nerves that transmit pain signals from different parts of the body can sometimes converge or overlap in the spinal cord and brain, causing confusion in the brain about the origin of the pain.

Referred pain can be a useful diagnostic tool for doctors, as it can help them identify the underlying cause of the pain. However, it can also be a source of confusion for patients, who may not realize that the actual source of their pain is not where they are feeling it.

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