Complex Regional Pain Syndrome: Symptoms Are Wide-Ranging & Unpredictable

Complex Regional Pain Syndrome is a condition that affects around 200,000 people in the US today. Unless you or a family member have been affected by it, you may have never heard of CRPS, or reflex sympathetic dystrophy syndrome (RSD), which is the previously medical term for Type 1. The majority of CRPS cases are Type 1, with symptoms appearing after something like a sprain or a break due to a trauma such as a car accident. Type 2 is rare and usually emerges after a trauma directly affecting and damaging the nerves.

Most individuals suffering from CRPS have one symptom in common: pain. Usually originating around the limb initially affected (that may have already healed), CRPS symptoms are often much more severe, causing both surprise and distress to the patient. Changes in the skin are typical of CRPS, centered around sensitivity; in fact, just the lightest touch or even a breeze could cause pain in the skin area. The texture and appearance of the skin may change too, pointing toward a CRPS diagnosis. The arm or leg affected may suddenly have a glossy or paper-like texture, and the skin may also change colors—from very pale to light red or blue.

Swelling and stiffness of the joints is a common symptom. If you have CRPS, you may have trouble moving—and in some cases the hands or feet may become paralyzed or fixed in one position. Atrophy is possible too as muscles are not being used—and in many cases, the individual becomes anxious about mobility altogether due to the fear of intense pain and frustrating lack of coordination. Body temperature in the affected area may be erratic, along with pulsating pain and a burning sensation.

Medical professionals usually employ a variety of scans and tests to rule out other conditions. Upon diagnosis of CRPS they may recommend a range of physical therapy along with medications such as simple pain relievers, steroids, nerve blockers, opioids, and more. Because of such drastic lifestyle changes forced by CRPS, individuals suffering from the condition may become depressed as they try to adapt. Antidepressants and access to a counselor may be suggested on a regular basis. Symptoms may come and go, while some worsen and are permanent.

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.