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Sensing pain, pressure, heat, or cold in a nonspecific manner, usually without localizing the stimulus. Used especially of certain sensory nerves.
[From Medieval Greek prōtopathēs, affected first, from Greek prōtopathein, to feel first : prōto-, proto- + pathos, experience, feeling.]
pro·top′a·thy (-tŏp′ə-thē) n.
1. (Physiology) of or relating to a sensory nerve that perceives only coarse stimuli, such as pain
2. (Physiology) of or relating to such perception
[C20: from proto- + Greek pathos suffering, disease + -ic]
pro•to•path•ic(ˌproʊ təˈpæθ ɪk)
of or pertaining to neurons that sense only general areas of pain, heat, or cold.
pro•top•a•thy (prəˈtɒp ə θi) n.