Bone Scans May Be Used to Diagnose Complex Regional Pain Syndrome

Complex regional pain syndrome is a rare condition characterized by what is usually serious discomfort in areas that experienced trauma previously. What makes CRPS unique—and confuses patients suffering from symptoms—is that a mere sprain (brought on by a car accident or another trauma) which could have already completely healed may suddenly be replaced by chronic pain.

One limb is usually affected, and CRPS may present itself with a variety of symptoms. Discomfort or discoloration in skin is often an indicator of CRPS. If you are suffering from this condition, you may find that the appearance of your skin has changed to a blotchy color or it may be bluish or pink. The texture may have also become glossy and thin, and there may be burning or swelling. Coordination is an issue for some, and mobility can become difficult; in fact, CRPS is so severe in some cases that the fingers or toes may become fixed in an awkward position due to dystonia. Pain is also so severe that sometimes patients are anxious about bringing it on by moving at all. Muscles may begin to atrophy as a result.

Even if you are exhibiting the unique symptoms associated with CRPS, your doctor will probably rule out all other similar conditions first, to include other inflammatory or autoimmune diseases. MRIs are often used to diagnose CRPS, but bone scans are helpful too as they can display evidence of typical characteristics and abnormalities. Several phases are required for this type of diagnostic device, with the images recorded with initial blood flow. Next, blood pooling is recorded as doctors watch for inflammation, and a couple of hours later, they examine how much of the tracer used in the blood scan has been metabolized.

If a positive diagnosis has been made, treatments vary depending on severity; for example, in more moderate cases, doctors may suggest over-the-counter pain relievers. If that treatment does not work, they may prescribe opioids, nerve blockers, or corticosteroids like prednisone. Topical treatments or therapy may be suggested also, to include heat therapy, physical therapy, as well as other types of stimulation to alleviate pain and symptoms.

Were you in an accident due to the negligence of others that triggered CRPS? If so, please call Heintz & Becker today to consult with a skilled CRPS lawyer. Our attorneys have helped victims from Bradenton, Sarasota, and all over Florida get compensation for their damages and medical expenses. Call us for a free consultation now at 941-748-2916 or contact us online. We are here to help, and if you cannot come to us, we will come to you.

All blogs are written on behalf of Heintz & Becker for informational purposes. These articles should not, however, be considered legal advice, or in any way responsible for creating an attorney/client relationship.