Close Menu X

How Can We Help?

Complex Regional Pain Syndrome is indeed complex and painful

Injuries to the hands or feet sometimes lead to ongoing symptoms long after the underlying injury. The person may experience burning pain, swelling or discoloration in the extremity. The affected area may become extremely sensitive to touch or any movement.

The medical term is complex regional pain syndrome, or CRPS. It is also known as reflex sympathetic dystrophy (RSD) or causalgia. CRPS is a real medical condition. The pain can be disabling. Early diagnosis and treatment is important to alleviating the symptoms and reducing the duration.

Symptoms of complex regional pain syndrome (CRPS)

Complex regional pain syndrome is a condition characterized by various symptoms following a triggering event. The event could be an accident or surgery, especially involving damage to the peripheral nerves. CRPS/RSD is also associated with heart disease and stroke, carpal tunnel syndrome, degenerative arthritis, shingles, breast cancer and certain medications.

The mechanism of complex regional pain syndrome (reflex sympathetic dystrophy) is not well understood, but it is believed to be tied to irritation or over-stimulus of nerve tissues in blood vessels and the skin. The range of symptoms includes burning sensation, flushing or blanching, local swelling, and pain or tenderness in the affected region. As it progresses, CRPS can cause serious and painful changes to surrounding tissues, including bone.

Three distinct stages of CRPS (RSD)

  • The acute stage typically lasts three to six months. The symptoms are most severe during this period. Common symptoms are swelling, stiffness, burning pain, hot or cold skin, and sweating in the vicinity of the wound.

  • The dystrophic stage can last another three to six month. Typically there is less flushing or swelling, but the skin may change in appearance (shiny or discolored) and patients may struggle with persistent pain.

  • The atrophic stage can last for months or years, or end abruptly. Some patients experience a loss of motion or loss of function in the affected area, or tremors or spasms. The fatty layers under the skin may thin, and loss of bone mass (osteoporosis) may occur.

Diagnosis and treatment of complex regional pain syndrome

Diagnosing CRPS/RSD is tricky because the symptoms vary widely from one person to the next. Diagnostics may include X-rays and other radiology, sweat testing, or electrodiagnostic nerve testing, in conjunction with clinical examination by a physician.

Depending on the stage and severity of symptoms, treatment may include cold compresses, exercise/physical therapy, anti-inflammatory medications, pain medications (other than opioids), injected nerve blocks, or surgical treatments to disrupt the nerves or insert pain medication pumps. The goal is to reduce the pain and minimize loss of functionality in the affected limbs or skin.

If complex regional pain syndrome develops in the aftermath of a work accident or personal injury such as a car accident, there may be legal remedies to help with the extensive medical bills, lost time from work, and ongoing disabilities, pain and suffering. Talk to a lawyer who is familiar with the legal and medical issues with a diagnosis of CRPS/RSD.

Source: MayoClinic.org, MedicineNet.com

 

 

 

No Comments

Leave a comment
Comment Information

Our Awards and Accolades

    • The Best Lawyers in America
    • The National Trail Lawyers | Top 100 | Trail Lawyers
    • Newsweek Leaders In Showcase Personal Injury | 2011
    • Lawyers of Distinction | 2018
    • 2014 | Litigator Awards | Ranked Top 1% of Lawyers
    • Nation's Premier | NAOPIA | Top Ten Attorney | Personal Injury
    • American Law Society | Official Home of America's Top Lawyers
    • Best Lawyers | Best Law Firms | U.S.News & News Report | Rankings
    • New York Law Journal | 2015 Verdicts & Settlements | Hall of Fame | Motor Vehicle | Sakkas, Cahn & Weiss, LLP | Top 20 Verdict
    • Million Dollar Advocates Forum
    • Verdict Search's | Top NY Verdicts
    • Certified
    • National Association of Distinguished Counsel | Nation's Top One Percent | NADC
    • 2016 | Litigation Elite - Top 100 Trail Lawyers
    • Martindale-Hubbell | Distinguished | Peer Rated for High Professional Achievement | 2017
    • Who's who Legal | WWL
    • The National Advocates | Top 100 Lawyers
    • America's Top 100 Attorneys | Top 100
    • The National Trial Lawyers | Top 100 Trail Lawyers
    • Super Lawyers
    • Best Law Firms of America | LifeTime Member
    • Avvo | 10.0 | Superb | Top Attorney Personal Injury
Email Our Attorneys

Have Questions? Get A Free Case Review

Bold labels are required.

Contact Information
disclaimer.

The use of the Internet or this form for communication with the firm or any individual member of the firm does not establish an attorney-client relationship. Confidential or time-sensitive information should not be sent through this form.

close

Privacy Policy