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How Common Is CRPS?

How Common Is CRPS?

CRPS, also known as complex regional pain syndrome, is a neurological condition that has symptoms related to pain in your arms or legs, eventually leading to other extremities as well.

A study done in the United States reported that CRPS affects nearly 200,000 patients every year. Considering this alarming piece of information, it can be deduced that complex regional pain syndrome is pretty rare among the populace, but it can still occur.

However, technology and the medical industry have progressed to the point that there are now several treatment options for this condition. Furthermore, the rate at which your condition may get treated is very much dependent on how soon you receive a diagnosis and get proper treatment for CRPS.

Let us discuss this condition further and understand what this condition is in a bit more detail, what its leading symptoms are, and how it can be treated.

What Is CRPS?

As discussed previously, complex regional pain syndrome (CRPS) is a broad term that mainly describes excess and prolonged pain throughout your arm or leg. This ailment has tendencies to be present as an acute, short-term condition, but if left untreated for more then six months, it can become chronic.

The medical side of complex regional pain syndrome states that the condition is primarily caused by the malfunctioning of the peripheral C-fiber nerve fibers that are responsible for notifying your brain of pain that you may have been injured. These nerves are mainly responsible for communicating to your brain in the case of any pain occurring within your system.

When these nerves start to send pain messages to the brain in an excess amount, it will trigger inflammation, which will act as a signal for promoting healing and rest for the injury which may have occurred.

Symptoms Of CRPS

Thankfully, there are a number of identifiable symptoms which can help determine if someone is suffering from this ailment so that it can be looked at and treated at the earliest convenience.

1. Excess or Prolonged Pain after Contact

A known symptom of CRPS is the increased amount of sensitivity in the area which has been affected by this ailment. This is known as allodynia. When you are suffering from this, normal physical contact or even a light brush against the affected area can cause a considerable amount of acute or prolonged pain.

2. Constant or Spontaneous Fluctuating Pain

Many people have said that the sensation is similar to getting burned, and others have said that it is similar to getting pricked with countless pins and needles.

Whatever the sensation may feel like, if left untreated, the nerves will remain chronically inflamed, and the resulting pain will start to spread to other regions of the affected limb as well, especially in the case of the affected area being small.

There have also been cases, albeit rarely, where pain has been simultaneously felt in a similar location on the other limb as well. Medical professionals have given it the term “mirror pain,” indicating spinal cord damage.

3. Changes in skin texture

If left untreated, the skin in the area where CRPS is prevalent will start to change texture, primarily due to insufficient delivery of oxygen to that region. Some of the victims suffering from this ailment have reported their skin becomes shiny and thin, while others say that it becomes thick and scaly.

4. Impaired Muscle Strength and Movement

Most of the people who have contracted CRPS do not have any injuries which directly relate to the nerve fibers in charge of controlling muscle coordination and movement. However, there have been instances where people report having reduced capabilities when it comes to performing any kind of motion with the affected body part.

Normally, the reason for this is that the affected limb goes through phases of stinging pain which may fluctuate with the slightest touch due to the lack of proper muscle coordination.

Final Thoughts

CRPS, or complex regional pain syndrome, is an ailment that can be present in your limbs for a short time, but it also tends to go chronic if not treated properly. There are a number of symptoms that can be visibly identified to verify whether you are suffering from this condition or not.

In addition, there are also many causes that can lead to the development of this condition, including fractures and sprains. There have also been cases of surgical incisions leading to complex regional pain syndrome.

If you are feeling any of the symptoms mentioned above, or general uneasiness, don’t hesitate to reach out to us at Vigeo Wellness!

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