The global impact of visceral pain is extremely high, representing a significant portion
of all forms of chronic pain. In musculoskeletal practice, at least one-third of people
with persistent noncancerous pain report recurrent abdominal, pelvic, or chest pain
symptoms. Visceral pain can be felt in several different areas of the body and can
migrate throughout a region, even though the site of origin does not appear to change.
Traditionally, clinicians have examined musculoskeletal pain through a reductionist
lens that ignores the influence of the visceral system on musculoskeletal pain. The
hypothesis presented is that visceral pain has an important influence on developing
and maintaining different types of musculoskeletal pain through processes within the
peripheral or central nervous systems, as a result of a visceral nociceptive stimulus
generated by pathoanatomical or functional alterations. The hypothesis predicts that
a consideration of the function of the visceral system in musculoskeletal pain conditions
will improve clinical outcomes, moving beyond a linear model and adopting a more holistic
approach, especially in the more complex groups of patients.