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Complex Regional Pain Syndrome (RSD)

Oasis Therapeutics

Innovative Therapies for Treatment-Resistant Pain and Mood Disorders in Nashua, NH

Complex regional pain syndrome is the current name of reflex sympathetic dystrophy (RSD) and causalgia. By any name, the condition causes chronic, intense pain and swelling in a hand or foot. The team at Oasis Therapeutics includes experienced pain medicine specialists and psychiatrists who work together to provide integrative treatment. They offer advanced pain management techniques and alternative treatments that help alleviate your symptoms. To learn more about your treatment options, call the office in Nashua, New Hampshire, or book an appointment online today.

Complex Regional Pain Syndrome (RSD) Q & A

What are complex regional pain syndrome and RSD?

Complex regional pain syndrome (CRPS) is a chronic condition that causes excessive, intense pain and inflammation. CRPS develops following an injury to your hand or foot. The trauma may occur due to a fracture, sprain, surgery, or soft tissue wound, to name a few causes.

The ongoing pain is more severe than expected for the injury, and your symptoms continue after the injury heals. Without treatment, CRPS often gets progressively worse, making it hard to use the limb.

There are two types of CRPS:

CRPS type 1

CRPS I, previously called reflex sympathetic dystrophy (RSD), accounts for 90% of all cases. In this type, the pain is associated with chronically inflamed nerves, but there's no evidence of specific nerve damage.

CRPS type 2

You have CRPS II, previously called causalgia, when your provider traces your symptoms to identifiable nerve damage.

What symptoms occur in complex regional pain syndrome or RDS?

The hallmark symptom of RDS and causalgia is spontaneous, severe pain in one limb. The pain usually stays in one hand or foot but may spread through the associated arm or leg. 

In addition to chronic pain, you may experience:

  • Swelling in the affected area
  • Changes in skin color (blue, purple, red, or pale)
  • Changes in skin temperature (warmer or cooler)
  • Changes in skin texture
  • Abnormal sweating
  • Joint stiffness
  • Rapid or diminished hair and nail growth
  • Hypersensitivity to temperature and touch
  • Tremors or jerking movements
  • Involuntary muscle contractions
  • Loss of bone mass and strength
  • Muscle atrophy (wasting)

Loss of bone and muscle occur in later stages of CRPS, as the condition progressively worsens.

How is complex regional pain syndrome treated?

Whether you have RSD or causalgia, the condition usually requires more than one treatment approach to achieve optimal healing. In addition to being pain medicine specialists, the team at Oasis Therapeutics offers an array of alternative therapies that can ease your symptoms and promote healing.

Your personalized care plan may include any of the following:

  • Anti-inflammatory medications
  • Topical pain relievers
  • Medications for nerve pain
  • Physical therapy
  • Nerve blocks
  • Spinal cord stimulation
  • Ketamine infusion therapy
  • Acupuncture
  • Meditation
  • Massage
  • Hypnosis
  • Yoga
  • Psychotherapy

People who spend their days in chronic pain often develop mental health problems such as depression, anxiety, and in some cases, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). These mental health conditions heighten your pain and further interfere with your ability to get through the day. The innovative treatment options offered at Oasis Therapeutics can help alleviate both your pain and other associated symptoms allowing you to regain your quality of life.

If you have complex regional pain syndrome or a painful limb, call Oasis Therapeutics or book an appointment online today.