Complex Regional Pain Syndrome (CRPS) Specialist

Pain Management Specialists & Anesthesiologists located in Des Moines, IA & West Des Moines, IA

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Complex Regional Pain Syndrome (CRPS) services offered in Corner of Westown Pwky and 60th Street in West Des Moines, West Des Moines and East side of Des Moines, next to Perkins off of East Euclid, East Des Moines, IA

Complex regional pain syndrome (CRPS) is chronic, unexplained pain that greatly diminishes your mobility. At Metro Anesthesia & Pain Management in West Des Moines and Des Moines, Iowa, the board-certified anesthesiologists and pain management specialists use a multimodal approach to target the underlying cause of CRPS. By treating patients in an office environment, they can help reduce the cost of your co-pays and deductibles. Call or book an appointment online to learn more.

Complex Regional Pain Syndrome (CRPS) Q & A

What is complex regional pain syndrome?

Complex regional pain syndrome (CRPS) is a chronic pain condition that typically affects a single arm or leg. It typically starts as a result of injury or surgery. Heart attacks and strokes may also trigger CRPS. 

Individuals with CRPS can experience pain in the affected area that’s more intense than it should be. For example, a simple touch or tap on the arm can lead to much greater pain than normal. 

This hypersensitivity can worsen or improve over time, but lasting recovery is unpredictable without the right treatment.

What are the symptoms of complex regional pain syndrome?

Symptoms of complex regional pain syndrome vary from person to person. Common CRPS symptoms include:

  • Sensitivity to hot and cold 
  • Constant pain in the affected hand, arm, leg, or foot
  • Joint stiffness and inflammation
  • Swelling in the area of pain
  • Muscle spasms or weakness
  • Skin that appears blue, white, inflamed, or even shiny
  • Abnormal hair or nail growth
  • Poor range of motion in the affected extremity

Some of the consequences of CRPS are challenging to treat once they progress. Tightening skin and nail changes can cause long-term discomfort without early intervention.

What causes complex regional pain syndrome?

While researchers don’t know the exact cause of CRPS, they suspect the peripheral or central nervous system is responsible. Two types of CRPS cause chronic pain:

Type 1 CRPS

Type 1 CRPS occurs after an illness, infection, or injury that didn’t damage any of the nerves in the affected region.

Type 2 CRPS

Far fewer people have type 1 than type 2 CRPS, typically stemming from direct trauma to the affected nerves.

How is complex regional pain syndrome treated?

CRPS often requires a multimodal approach to care that includes a combination of treatments. After a careful evaluation, which consists of a physical exam, medical history review, and a series of imaging tests, your pain specialist may recommend the following treatments for CRPS:

  • Spinal cord stimulation
  • Stem cell therapy

If you’re experiencing symptoms of complex regional pain syndrome, call Metro Anesthesia & Pain Management or schedule an appointment online today.