Complex Regional Pain Syndrome Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy Syndrome (CRPS) / Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy Syndrome (RSD)
Complex regional pain syndrome (CRPS), also known as Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy Syndrome (RSD), is a chronic pain condition that affects one of the limbs (arms, legs, hands or feet) after an injury or trauma to that limb.
At the New Jersey law firm of Mazie Slater Katz & Freeman, we have had incredible success in litigating CRPS and RSD lawsuits. Our New Jersey personal injury lawyers won a $14.7 million personal injury settlement for an individual who developed complex regional pain syndrome after a car ran over his foot. This is the largest CRPS or RSD lawsuit recovery in New Jersey history, and it is also believed to be the largest in the nation’s history.
CRPS/RSD symptoms vary in severity and duration. In severe cases, patients may not recover and may have long-term disability. Prolonged pain may be constant and extremely uncomfortable. It may feel like a burning “pins and needles” sensation or as if something is squeezing the affected limb. The pain may spread to include the entire arm or leg, even though the aggravating injury might have happened to a finger or toe. Pain can sometimes also travel to the opposite arm or leg. Increased sensitivity in the affected area is frequent, and even light touch or contact is painful (called allodynia).
Constant or intermittent changes in temperature, skin color and swelling of the affected limb are also common, due to abnormal microcirculation caused by damage to the nerves controlling blood flow and temperature. An affected arm or leg may feel warmer or cooler compared to the opposite limb. The skin on the affected limb may change color, becoming blotchy, blue, purple, pale or red. Other common features of CRPS and RSD include:
- Changes in skin texture on the affected area
- Abnormal sweating pattern in the affected area or surrounding areas
- Changes in nail and hair growth patterns
- Stiffness in affected joints
- Problems coordinating muscle movement, with decreased ability to move the affected body part
- Abnormal movement in the affected limb, most often a fixed abnormal posture (called dystonia) but also tremors in or jerking of the affected limb.
Who is at Risk for CRPS and RSD?
Anybody can develop CRPS or RSD. It strikes at any age, affecting men and women, but women are more likely to develop it. Most people with CRPS/RSD are in their forties. It is rare in the elderly. Children do not get it before age 5 and only very rarely before age 10, but it is not uncommon in teenagers.
What are the causes of CRPS?
In the vast majority of cases, the condition is triggered by a trauma or injury. The most common triggers are:
- Soft tissue injury (such as burns, cuts or bruises)
- Limb immobilization (such as being in a cast)
- Surgical or medical procedures (such as needlestick)
CRPS magnifies the effects of the injury, like an allergy. Some individuals respond dramatically to a trigger that doesn’t affect other people.
How is CRPS treated?
The following treatments are frequently used:
- Rehabilitation therapy
CRPS is a severely painful, chronic problem. If you or a loved one were injured in an accident and developed CRPS, contact the New Jersey offices of Mazie Slater Katz & Freeman. Our New Jersey personal injury attorneys will respond as soon as possible to discuss your case at no cost to you.
NJ Lawyers Complex Regional Pain Syndrom
If you or a loved one has been injured contact Mazie Slater Katz & Freeman. One of our NJ personal injury attorneys will contact you within twenty-four (24) hours to discuss your case.