Complex Regional Pain Syndrome (CRPS) was previously known as Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy (RSD). A leading cause of Complex Regional Pain Syndrome is mild to severe trauma such as an injury or surgery. Complex Regional Pain Syndrome affects millions of people in the United States with a higher incidence among women.
Although the symptoms and causes of Complex Regional Pain Syndrome vary widely, the most common symptom is severe pain that is out of proportion to the severity of aninjury. The pain is usually in an arm/hand or leg/foot that has had an injury whether minor or major. Other symptoms may include color change in the affected limb, swelling, temperature change and hair loss on the affected limb. While treatment for Complex Regional Pain Syndrome can help significantly, it is difficult to predict response.
Early treatment is most effective and can include:
- Nerve blocks
- Drug therapy
- Physical therapy
- External or implantable pain relief devices (spinal cord stimulation)