Complex regional pain syndrome (CRPS) is a disorder that causes discomfort, skin color changes, and other symptoms in arms, legs, hands, or feet. Dallas CRPS symptoms can significantly influence the function of the affected part, sleep, everyday activities, and mental health. Experts believe a central or peripheral nervous system malfunction causes CRPS.
The symptoms of CRPS
The severity and duration of CRPS symptoms vary. Continuous, intense pain that worsens rather than improves with time is one of the symptoms of CRPS. If CRPS develops after an accident, it can seem out of proportion to the severity of the damage. Even if the damage is limited to a finger or toe, pain can extend to the entire leg or arm. In rare circumstances, pain can even transfer to the opposite extremity. Additional CRPS symptoms include:
- Burning discomfort.
- Sensitivity to cold or touch.
- Affected joints swell and stiffen.
- Motor impairment, characterized by a reduced capacity to move the afflicted body part
- Alteration in nail and hair development patterns; hair growth can be quick or non-existent.
- The skin changes. CRPS can cause fluctuations in skin temperature, with the skin on one extremity feeling warmer or colder than the skin on the opposite extremity. Blotchy, pale, purple, or red skin can develop. Also, your skin texture can alter, becoming glossy and thin. Those suffering from CRPS can experience excessive sweating.
The common risk factors of CRPS
Certain factors that can increase your risk of having CRPS include:
- Poor nerve health: Diabetes, for example, can make your nerves less robust and able to repair themselves. Those with peripheral neuropathy can find it difficult to rebuild nerve cells after an injury that would not normally create issues. Smoking and past chemotherapy can also make nerve regeneration difficult.
- Immune system problems: Your immune system plays a significant role in inflammation. Some persons with CRPS have high amounts of inflammatory molecules known as cytokines, contributing to specific CRPS symptoms. Also, those with other inflammatory and autoimmune disorders like asthma are more likely to develop CRPS.
- Genetics: Your genes have the potential to influence your capacity to heal from an injury. Researchers have found CRPS family clusters. While this is uncommon, it shows that CRPS can have a genetic link.
Is CRPS considered a mental illness?
No, CRPS is not a mental illness but a neurological disorder. Nonetheless, CRPS can induce or increase anxiety, despair, and stress. It can also occasionally result in post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).
When to see your healthcare provider about CRPS
Due to the complexity of this disorder and the fact that it is usually misdiagnosed, consult a pain management expert or a specialty pain clinic that specializes in CRPS if:
- You suspect you have CRPS symptoms.
- Your symptoms are worsening.
- Your condition has not responded to other therapy methods.
Complex regional pain syndrome (CRPS) can significantly impact your quality of life. The good news is that several therapy choices and combinations of alternatives are available. The sooner you acquire a CRPS diagnosis and begin therapy, the more likely your symptoms will improve. Call Magnolia Pain Associates or book your meeting online to determine which CRPS therapies are ideal for you.