Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy (RSD), also known as Complex Regional Pain Syndrome (CRPS), is a 125 year-old mystery. Although Dr. Silas Weir Mitchell recorded symptoms of RSD in Civil War soldiers, the causes and diagnosis of the syndrome remain unknown. Improving our understanding of the symptoms of RSD can enhance our ability to diagnose RSD and assist RSD victims.
Women older than 50 years are most likely to be afflicted with RSD. Research shows that RSD sometimes follows an injury, but in nearly a third of the reported cases the cause cannot be identified.
The main symptoms of RSD are severe burning and pain. If untreated, dystrophy, meaning weakness or wasting, occurs. The development of the RSD syndrome may be split into three stages:
The early symptoms consist of the aforementioned pain and burning sensation. The affected area may show swelling and feel tender. There may also be changes in the temperature and color of skin.
Pain increases where there is a change in temperature, breezes, air conditioning or touch. The area afflicted by RSD becomes very swollen and looks pale. X-rays reveal thinning or thinning of bones and joints. The muscles may also be affected.
The affected area may experience permanent changes such as the skin becoming drawn. The muscles and tissues may become wasted and tight so that movement is significantly impaired.
Although RSD can develop into a very serious condition, treatments exist. If you or a loved one suffers from RSD, call the Scranton personal injury lawyers from Rosenn, Jenkins and Greenwald to determine whether you may recover damages.