We aimed to study the relationship between pain perception and cytokine release during systemic inflammation. We present a randomized crossover trial in healthy volunteers (n = 17) in 37 individual trials. Systemic inflammation was induced by an i.v. bolus of Escherichia coli LPS (2 ng/kg) on two separate trial days, with or without a nicotine patch applied 10 h previously. Pain perception at baseline, and 2 and 6 h after LPS was assessed by pressure algometry and tonic heat stimulation at an increasing temperature (45-48℃) during both trials. Compared with baseline, pain pressure threshold was reduced 2 and 6 h after LPS, while heat pain perception was accentuated at all testing temperatures after 2 but not 6 h. The magnitude of changes in pain perception did not correlate to cytokine release. No effect of transdermal nicotine or training status was observed. In conclusion, LPS administration in healthy human volunteers leads to reduction in pain pressure threshold and an increase in pain perception to heat stimuli, supporting a relationship between acute systemic inflammation and pain perception.