Further information is More information is available available at the following at: n Patient Information for the locations: www.arc.org.uk Gloucestershire Health Community Cheltenham General Hospital www.rsd-crps.co.uk io Physiotherapy Department 08454 223040 Occupational Therapy Department s 08454 224088 r Orthopaedic Outpatient Department 08454 223147 Complex Regional e Plaster room 08454 223148 Pain clinic Pain Syndrome v 08454 223198 Cirencester Hospital - Physiotherapy (CRPS) Department 01285 884583 Also known as: e Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy/ Gloucestershire Royal Hospital Algodystrophy n Physiotherapy Department 08454 228527 li Occupational Therapy Department 08454 226559 Orthopaedic Outpatient Department n 08454 228408 Plaster room: 08454 228411 Pain clinic 08454 225124 o Lydney Hospital 01594 598235 Stroud General Hospital 01453 562260 Tewkesbury Hospital 01684 853933 GHPI0729_04_07 Author: Physiotherapy Review due: April 2010 This leaflet answers questions frequently What effects does CRPS How long does CRPS last? asked by patients with Complex Regional have? Approximately 50% of cases are mild and n Pain Syndrome (CRPS). 1. Pain resolve quickly and without treatment. In more severe cases symptoms may last for o This is the most common complaint What is CRPS? up to two years and occasionally longer. i and is usually out of proportion to CRPS is a poorly understood condition. the severity of the injury. The affected It occurs most commonly following part is often sensitive to touch and How is CRPS treated? s injury or surgery, although it can also just stroking the area can cause r • It is important to continue with as occur following heart attacks, strokes or pain. Sudden shocks or jolts can also many normal everyday activities infections. It usually affects the hands result in increased pain. When this is as possible whilst waiting for the e or feet although it can also affect the experienced it does not mean that condition to resolve. Pacing your ankles, knees or shoulders. CRPS varies further damage is being done. activities will help, i.e. keeping your considerably in severity and is also known v 2. Swelling and stiffness level of activity the same on good and by a number of other names including These are often linked. Fingers/toes bad days. Occupational therapists can Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy (RSD) and may be swollen and because of this, help you deal with specific difficulties. Algodystrophy. mobility is restricted and stiffness e • Physiotherapy is the main treatment. experienced. In the hand this may The aim of physiotherapy is to maintain Why does CRPS occur? result in difficulty making a fist. or restore movement in the affected n 3. Changes in skin colour, temperature joints so that contractures (permanent li We do not know exactly why it occurs. It is thought that in patients with CRPS and sweating stiffness) do not occur. Therapists the body’s response to injury or surgery is The affected part can become hot and will advise the most effective way to exaggerated causing more pain, stiffness, red, or cold and blue. The hand or foot achieve this and also provide advice on n and/or swelling, than normally expected. may sweat more profusely than on the how to control other symptoms. unaffected side. Occasionally changes • Painkillers may help you to continue o in the skin, nails and even hair growth most everyday activities and to exercise Who gets CRPS? are experienced. effectively. Unfortunately anyone can be affected. It • Injections performed by Pain may occur in up to 30% of cases following Consultants may be helpful if the wrist fracture although in most cases the How is CRPS diagnosed? condition is slow to improve. These are symptoms are mild and resolve. There is no The diagnosis is made by the symptoms usually followed by a short period of way of predicting who will be affected and described and also by the examination intensive physiotherapy. there is no known way of preventing it. performed by a doctor or physiotherapist. In later cases there may be changes seen on x-ray or bone scan.