Phantom Limb ‘Sensations’ vs. Phantom Limb ‘Pain’
Though they sound similar, these two experiences have distinct differences. Phantom limb sensations and phantom limb pain are two different things that can happen when someone loses a limb. Phantom limb sensations are when someone feels things like warmth, itching, or even the sense of their missing limb moving. It’s like their brain is still getting signals from the limb that isn’t there anymore. These sensations can be strange and confusing, but they usually don’t hurt.
However, phantom limb pain is when someone feels pain in the missing limb, even though it’s gone. This pain can be sharp, throbbing, or even cramping. It’s like the brain is telling the body that the missing limb is hurting, even though there’s nothing there to hurt. Phantom limb pain can be distressing and challenging to deal with, and scientists are working hard to understand why it happens and find ways to help people feel better.