Complex regional pain syndrome is a condition that is characterized by extreme pain. It’s more than would be expected after an injury, fracture, or surgery. People with this condition experience extreme pain even with a light touch.
Chronic regional pain syndrome is believed to occur due to abnormal functioning of the central and peripheral nervous systems. The abnormal functioning causes an overreaction to pain signals.
It mainly affects the extremities: arms, legs, feet, and hands, but it can also affect other body parts.
Chronic regional pain syndrome can be triggered by:
- An infection
- Trauma such as fractures, a broken bone, and amputation
- Heart attack
- Nerve pressure
- Soft tissue injuries like burns
- Certain brain injuries
- Damage to blood vessels and nerves
Symptoms of Complex Regional Pain Syndrome
Early diagnosis of Complex regional pain syndrome is difficult as it is not a straightforward diagnosis. Here are the symptoms to look out for:
- Pain is intense and out of proportion compared to the severity of the injury.
- A burning pain that gets worse over time instead of getting better.
- Sensitivity to touch or cold.
- Swelling and stiffness
- Motor disability or decreased ability to move the affected part
- The skin changes in color and texture.
- Changes in the growth pattern of hair and nails. It can be either rapid growth or no growth.
Gender: This condition affects more women than men.
Age: – adults aged 20-40 are more likely to be diagnosed with this condition than young children and the elderly.
When to See a Pain Doctor
It is advisable to see a pain management specialist for early diagnosis and treatment if:
- You have extreme pain that keeps getting worse.
- You have other symptoms that correspond with those of complex regional pain syndrome.
- Your symptoms keep getting worse even with other pain management treatments.
Contact Commonwealth Spine & Pain Specialists for early diagnosis and treatment of complex regional pain syndrome. There is no cure for this condition, but interventions and treatments will help minimize your pain and allow you to resume your daily activities.