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Chronic Regional Pain

Chronic Regional Pain

Chronic Regional Pain is also known as Complex regional pain syndrome (CRPS). It is a condition of intense burning pain, stiffness, swelling, and discoloration that most often affects the hand, arms, legs, and feet. The pain of CRPS is usually triggered by an injury.

CRPS is most common in people ages 20-35. The syndrome also can occur in children, it affects women more often than men. Chronic Regional Pain syndrome was previously known as reflex sympathetic dystrophy, Sudeck's atrophy, shoulder-hand syndrome, or causalgia.

 Signs and symptoms of Chronic Regional Pain may include

  • The most common symptoms are extreme pain, including burning, stabbing, grinding, and throbbing.
  • Abnormal swelling in the affected area.
  • Skin color changes.
  • Decreased ability to move your affected limb and increased stiffness.
  • Changes in skin texture, becoming shiny and thin or excessively sweaty.
  • Pattern changes in nail and hair growth.

Symptoms of CRPS typically start within four to six weeks after the injury, fracture or surgery. And it's vary from person to person.

Preparing For Your Chronic Regional Pain Surgery

Generally several alternative therapies have been used to treat other painful conditions. Options included such as behavior modification, acupuncture, relaxation techniques and chiropractic treatment. And we may also refer to a doctor who specializes in the treatment of preparing for your Chronic Regional Pain Surgery problems.

Post Operative Activities

  • In most cases, symptoms occur at 1 to 3 weeks after surgery.
  • First procedure to correct mechanical derangement of the knee was 5 months.
  • 8 of 17 patients (47%) had recurrence of CRPS after surgery.

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Frequently Asked questions


You can initially consult your family physician or GP who can treat the condition with pain killers and refer you to physiotherapy. For persistent severe pain you will be referred to a pain specialist for evaluation and management.
Although it is more common in women, CRPS can occur in anyone at any age, with a peak at age 40. CRPS is rare in the elderly. Very few children under age 10 and almost no children under age 5 are affected.
The key symptom is prolonged severe pain that may be constant. It has been described as "burning", "pins and needles" sensation, or as if someone were squeezing the affected limb. The pain may spread to the entire arm or leg, even though the injury might have only involved a finger or toe.
One of the theories suggested for CRPS isan auto immune cause. If auto immunity is suspected, testing for auto antibodies (antinuclear antibody) may be performed.
There is no cure for CRPS. However with medications, physiotherapy and counseling most patients experience significant improvement in their symptoms. A few patients suffer from severe persistent symptoms.
While it is not guaranteed, it is common for CRPS to spread in many cases. If CRPS does spread, it is usually to nearby areas. For example, if you have CRPS in your arm, it may spread to your hand or shoulder. If you have pain in your leg, it may spread to your foot or buttocks.
Unfortunately, CRPS will not simply go away. This is why early diagnosis and treatment is critical. In some cases, people can go undiagnosed with CRPS for years; if there is a possibility that a person may have CRPS, going to see a doctor is imperative.

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