What is CRPS?

Complex Regional Pain Syndrome is a complex and chronic (lasting greater than 6 months) pain condition that involves the entire nervous system. CRPS is typically diagnosed after an injury (minor or major) and is believed to be caused by a malfunction of, or damage to the Peripheral or Central Nervous Systems.  It is also considered to be an inflammatory and autoimmune condition, in addition to the chronic pain.

CRPS has had multiple name changes since it was originally documented in 1812, with the most recent update in 1994. There are currently 2 types of CRPS, although the symptoms and treatment options for both are similar.

CRPS is known for causing the highest rated pain on the McGill Pain Index (created at McGill University). It is ranked 42 out of 50, which is higher than childbirth, non terminal cancer, amputation of digit and everything else on the Index that causes pain. 

 "Every Patient is Different"

---> CRPS symptoms and treatment options are different for every patient. Some cases are severe and some are mild. Some result in a long-term disability and some cases even go away on their own or after proper treatment. <---

How is CRPS Diagnosed?

Unfortunately, there is no specific test to confirm a CRPS diagnosis. However, tests can be used when ruling out other conditions. Thermal imaging and bone scans can also be used to assist with proper diagnosis, but the results can show similar symptoms to other conditions.

The Budapest Criteria is considered the only tool for proper and effective diagnosis. CRPS should be diagnosed if the following criteria is met and the patient has continued pain, which is disproportionate to any inciting event.

What are the symptoms of CRPS?

Every patient is different and that includes our list of symptoms. Some patients experience a variety of these symptoms and some will experience only one or two. We are all different & it is important to not compare ourselves to others. The most common symptom is prolonged and severe pain that can be constant for the patient. 

Other possible symptoms include:

-Changes in skin color 

-Changes in temperature

-Nail growth changes



-Sensitivity to the affected limb

-Environmental Sensitivities to light or sound

-Problems coordinating muscle movement 

-Limited range of motion.

-Abnormal movement (tremors, weakness dystonia)


-Brain Fog

-Short Term Memory Loss




-Bladder complications

-Difficulties Regulating Emotions

-Dental Complications

and more.

Can CRPS Spread?

Almost everything about CRPS varies with each patient, including it's ability to spread. Although it is possible for CRPS to spread to other limbs in the body, it does not happen to every patient. 

Do you have CRPS?

If you have CRPS, we have started a section of this website that might be worth checking out! Living with CRPS is being filled with useful tips and tricks to help you manage life a little easier while conquering your condition. 

Join us on Facebook to communicate with others who live with CRPS too! www.facebook.com/groups/conquercrps

Quick Tip: The Spoon Theory is commonly used among patients with chronic pain conditions. Many patients refer to themselves and each other as 'Spoonies' because of this helpful aid. 

Is there a cure for CRPS?

Unfortunately, there is not a cure for CRPS at this time. However, researchers around the world are continuously learning more about CRPS and active research is happening. We know it's difficult to read that there is no cure for our symptoms, but, please remember that you are not alone and that we will continue trying to find answers for all of us. One step and one spoon at a time. To join our support services please email crpsdreamteam@gmail.com and to learn more about how to live with CRPS, check out our Living with CRPS page.

More information coming soon 3/2/23

 ****DISCLAIMER: We are NOT Doctors. We are CRPS Patients who have spent years researching and connecting with others to learn about their experiences to help others. We want to help in any way that we can, but we are NOT doctors. Please discuss anything major with your medical providers. Some say that patients become the best educators for CRPS, often due to a lack of support from the medical community, but we want to change that. 'CRPS has the highest rated pain, we want the world to know it's name' and we are Stronger Together. So let's work together to raise awareness, be supportive and get the answers to questions we all want to know. MEDICAL REVIEW PENDING**