What Do I Need to Know About Complex Regional Pain Syndrome?

What Do I Need to Know About Complex Regional Pain Syndrome?

If you or a loved one has recently been diagnosed with Complex Regional Pain Syndrome, it’s likely that you are looking for more information about what this means. At the Comprehensive Pain Institute, we believe in the power of educating our patients and their families. To that end, today we will be unpacking the basics of Complex Regional Pain Syndrome (CRPS). This blog will cover CRPS causes, symptoms, treatments and more


What is Complex Regional Pain Syndrome?

Complex Regional Pain Syndrome (CRPS), also formerly referred to as reflex sympathetic dystrophy (RSD), is a condition in which the patient experiences unusually high degrees of inflammation and/or pain after an injury to or surgery performed on a leg or arm. It has also been known to be a lasting side effect of a stroke. CRPS can be short-lived (acute) or continue for 3-6 months or longer (chronic). In extreme cases, it can be a permanent condition.



CRPS occurs when a person’s peripheral sensory neurons are injured. This can happen in a variety of ways, including:

  • Stroke
  • Strain/sprain
  • Surgery
  • Fracture
  • Deep cuts or penetrations



The symptoms of CRPS vary, depending on the cause and the severity of the individual’s case. However, the following is a list of the more common symptoms:

  • Joint swelling/stiffness
  • Throbbing, burning or stabbing pain to area
  • Sensitivity to cold or touch
  • Distinct changes to nail and hair growth
  • Skin’s texture/appearance and color changes
  • Muscle tremors and/or spasms

Early diagnosis and treatment are key to reversing these symptoms. If you or someone you love is experiencing any of these following an injury, surgery or stroke, we have Benbrook doctors accepting new patients (locations also in Bedford and Lewisville) who can help.



In many cases, CRPS decreases over time, resulting in a complete reversal. Treatment is helpful in both the acute and chronic cases, especially when beginning in the early stages. Some of the more common treatments are:

  • Medications (especially Acetaminophen, NSAIDS and Corticosteroids)
  • Spinal Cord Stimulation
  • Rehabilitation
  • Physical Therapy
  • Nerve blocks
  • Psychotherapy
  • Biofeedback

The pain doctors in Benbrook TX (locations also in Bedford and Lewisville) offer several therapies and treatments for CRPS. We would love the opportunity to assess your specific symptoms and offer a fresh perspective on a treatment plan.



Community, education and research are also extremely beneficial. Take the time to surround yourself with a positive perspective and passionate advocacy. Here are some of our favorite resources for CRPS support:

  • RSDSA: The Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy Syndrome Association (RSDSA) is a national non-profit organization dedicated to educating and supporting individuals with CRPS/RSD.
  • TCAPP: The Coalition Against Pediatric Pain can help individuals gain access to resources and advocacy for help with CRPS (and other chronic pain conditions) in those under the age of 18.
  • Clinical Trials: National database for all clinical trials available for participation including but not limited to CRPS.


Pain Doctors in Benbrook TX

Whether you are struggling with CRPS or another chronic pain condition, at CPI we seek to be the healthcare provider patients choose. Our mission is to provide compassionate, innovative healthcare that exceeds our patients’ expectations. Our core values are honor, excellence, commitment and compassion. We treat patients like family, honoring their humanity. Call today to schedule your first appointment!

© 2024 Comprehensive Pain Institute
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