September 2, 2014

Raising awareness of Complex Regional Pain Syndrome

You may have never heard of Complex Regional Pain Syndrome (CRPS), yet it has been described as the most painful long-term condition. CRPS sufferers often experience severe pain, swelling, pins and needles, burning sensations, changes in temperature and skin colour. Other features of the condition include increased sensitivity to light touch, changes in skin texture and appearance and changes in hair and nail growth.

CRPS facts

  • CRPS affects both men and women but it is three times more common in women. The average age of a CRPS sufferer is 42.
  • Over 90% of CRPS sufferers have a clear history of injury or trauma prior to the development of their CRPS. Most common injuries include fractures, sprains, strains, soft tissue injuries including burns, cuts and bruises.
  • Sadly, CRPS can travel up or down a limb or even to the opposite limb.
  • Doctors do not know why one individual may develop CRPS after an injury while another individual would not develop it after similar trauma.

What can be done

Ideally treatment for CRPS should commence within three months of the first symptoms. Good progress can be made if treatment starts early. However, if there is a delay in treatment CRPS can spread and changes in bone, nerve and muscle may become irreversible.

Vitamin C taken on a daily basis after an injury has been shown to reduce the risk of CRPS.

Raising awareness of CRPS

CRPS has not always been acknowledged by the medical profession, but is now recognised as a condition that deserves compensation. Raising awareness of CRPS is crucial.

Close to Withy King’s Bath office is the Royal National Hospital for Rheumatic Diseases (“The Min”) which is the national centre for the management of CRPS. Treatment at The Min aims to enhance an individual’s daily functioning and to allow the individual to return to former activities.

On 20 September 2014, Withy King is sponsoring a Study Day for healthcare professionals at The Min which will give delegates an overview of CRPS, the inpatient rehabilitation programme and workshops related to practical therapy approaches including mirror visual feedback, desensitisation and hydrotherapy.

CRPS compensation claims expertise

Withy King specialist solicitors are committed to raising awareness of CRPS. If you have developed CRPS following an injury, it is important that you receive advice from a specialist lawyer who understands CRPS. Contact Withy King’s Chronic Pain team for specialist legal advice and we will help you arrange appropriate rehabilitation and therapy.

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