DOLORisk: Study protocol for a multi-centre observational study to understand the risk factors and determinants of neuropathic pain [version 2; referees: 2 approved]

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Background: Neuropathic pain is an increasingly prevalent condition and has a major impact on health and quality of life. However, the risk factors for the development and maintenance of neuropathic pain are poorly understood. Clinical, genetic and psychosocial factors all contribute to chronic pain, but their interactions have not been studied in large cohorts. The DOLORisk study aims to study these factors. Protocol: Multicentre cross-sectional and longitudinal cohorts covering the main causes leading to neuropathic pain (e.g. diabetes, surgery, chemotherapy, traumatic injury), as well as rare conditions, follow a common protocol for phenotyping of the participants. This core protocol correlates answers given by the participants on a set of questionnaires with the results of protocol for phenotyping of the participants. This core protocol correlates answers given by the participants on a set of questionnaires with the results of their genetic analyses. A smaller number of participants undergo deeper phenotyping procedures, including neurological examination, nerve conduction studies, threshold tracking, quantitative sensory testing, conditioned pain modulation and electroencephalography. Ethics and dissemination: All studies have been approved by their regional ethics committees as required by national law. Results are disseminated through the DOLORisk website, scientific meetings, open-access publications, and in partnership with patient organisations. Strengths and limitations: • Large cohorts covering many possible triggers for neuropathic pain • Multi-disciplinary approach to study the interaction of clinical, psychosocial and genetic risk factors • High comparability of the data across centres thanks to harmonised protocols • One limitation is that the length of the questionnaires might reduce the response rate and quality of responses of participants.


  • Mathilde M.V. Pascal
  • Andreas C. Themistocleous
  • Ralf Baron
  • Andreas Binder
  • Didier Bouhassira
  • Geert Crombez
  • Nanna B. Finnerup
  • Janne Gierthmühlen
  • Yelena Granovsky
  • Harry L. Hebert
  • Troels S. Jensen
  • Kristinn Johnsen
  • Mark I. McCarthy
  • Weihua Meng
  • Colin N.A. Palmer
  • Andrew S.C. Rice
  • Jordi Serra
  • Romà Solà
  • David Yarnitsky
  • Blair H. Smith
  • Nadine Attal
  • David L.H. Bennett
External organisations
  • University of Oxford
  • University Medical Center Schleswig-Holstein Campus Kiel
  • CHU Ambroise Paré
  • Versailles Saint-Quentin-en-Yvelines University
  • Ghent University
  • Aarhus University
  • Aarhus University Hospital
  • Technion - Israel Institute of Technology
  • Wellcome Trust Centre for Human Genetics
  • University of Dundee
  • Imperial College London
  • Mentis Cura EHF
  • Neuroscience Technologies S.L.P.
  • Ninewells Hospital and Medical School
Research areas and keywords

Subject classification (UKÄ) – MANDATORY

  • Neurosciences
  • Endocrinology and Diabetes


  • Diabetes, Nerve injury, Neuropathic pain, Neuropathy, Pain, Protocol, Risk factors
Original languageEnglish
Article number63
JournalWellcome Open Research
Publication statusPublished - 2019
Publication categoryResearch