Electronic Theses and Dissertations



Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science


Biomedical Engineering

Committee Chair

Amy Dejongh Curry

Committee Member

Robert Waters

Committee Member

Helen Sable

Committee Member

Carl Herickhoff


Reorganization of the primary somatosensory cortex (S1) that follows deafferentation may play a role in phantom limb pain (PLP). An animal model of forelimb amputation and subsequent S1 reorganization, like the rat, could advance research in the underlying mechanisms of PLP. The rat grimace scale (RGS) is a method of behavioral analysis used to quantify the affective state. In this study, 8 amputee and 4 sham-operated rats were observed for a minimum of one week pre-surgery and up to 11 weeks post-surgery to score the facial behaviors using RGS. The change in overall average pre-surgery and post-surgery RGS score was significantly different between the amputee and sham groups (p < 0.05). Results indicated that a threshold change of 0.3 in pre-to post-surgery RGS scores may differentiate amputee and sham subjects, but further studies must be done to confirm that chronic pain, namely PLP, can be recorded in rats.


Data is provided by the student.

Library Comment

Dissertation or thesis originally submitted to ProQuest


Open Access