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What is Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy?

Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy (RSD), also known as Chronic Regional Pain Syndrome (CRPS), is a very serious complication of injury. This injury can be musculoskeletal, it could be injury to a nerve or it can be injury as a result of surgery or other medical procedures.

RSD/CRPS has been described as a short circuit of the nervous system where the nerves misfire sending constant pain signals to the brain which then causes the nervous system and the immune system to react to tissue damage from trauma.

Unfortunately, RSD/CRPS causes severe and intolerable pain and other complications that can spread beyond the original site of injury.

Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy/Chronic Regional Pain Syndrome can result from any traumatic injury. While it happens more often with serious injuries or crush injuries to muscles, it can also happen from sprains, strains, fractures or minor injuries. It can also happen during surgery. Sometimes when a nerve is cut or damaged, RSD/CRPS can be an unfortunate complication.

What is most important if you have Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy/Chronic Regional Pain Syndrome is that your condition be diagnosed as soon as possible so that appropriate treatment can be started at once. This offers the best opportunity to control the condition or to have it go into remission. It is also important to be persistent in seeking proper treatment because sometimes medical providers don't believe that the symptoms that their patients have are real and sometimes RSD/CRPS is attributed to psychological problems or even worse, a person with this terrible condition is accused of exaggerating their symptoms.

If you are involved in an accident that results in a personal injury that causes RSD/ CRPS, it is very important that you see experienced medical providers such as neurologists or pain management specialists to make the correct diagnosis because unfortunately, insurance adjusters who handle claims are trained to be very skeptical and frequently refuse to believe that your complaints are real. The attorney who you select to represent you in a personal injury case must also be aware of this serious complication so that your case can be properly presented to the insurance company.

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