By Peter Baldry
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Additional resources for Acupuncture, Trigger Points and Musculoskeletal Pain, 3rd Edition
He was, therefore, beginning to formulate ideas concerning the pathogenesis of muscular rheumatism, which were very much in line with the modern view that the pain develops as a result of nerve endings at tender points (or what today are more often called TrPs) becoming sensitized for one or other of a variety of different reasons. In the light of all this, it may be seen that Valleix may not have been so far off the mark as at first sight might be thought when he called muscular rheumatism a type of neuralgia.
He clearly realized that the reason why these points are tender is because they are sites where nerve endings are in a state of hyperactivity and for this reason he called them nerve points (nervenpunkte). He also stated that he thought this neural hyperactivity occurred as a result of external factors such as changes of temperature, alterations in weather conditions, physical exertion and emotional upsets, or, alternatively, because of ‘heightened excitability’ of the nervous system occurring as the result of such influences as heredity, intemperance and illness in general.
Nevertheless, in an attempt to get the medical profession to take notice of what he had to say about musculoskeletal pain, he wrote a number of papers on the subject over the next 10 years. Confusingly, however, during the course of this he changed his name three times and even more confusingly kept giving the musculoskeletal pain disorder he was discussing a different name. Thus, in 1938 and again in 1940, under the name of M Gutstein, he wrote about what he called muscular or common rheumatism.