Diagnosing and treating complex regional pain syndrome (CRPS) can be complicated, but with a team of pain specialists and experts, an accurate diagnosis and treatment plan can be achieved. The best way to diagnose this chronic condition is by ruling out other conditions, like rheumatoid arthritis, for example. By the process of elimination, a pain doctor and his team can come to the correct diagnosis.
According to WebMD, triple-phase bone scans can be used to identify changes in the bone and in blood circulation. The presence of a previous injury can be a sign of complex regional syndrome, as well as a higher-than-expected amount of pain from that injury. The Mayo Clinic points out how important your medical history is when diagnosing this condition. They also suggest the following:
- Bone scan – A radioactive substance injected into one of your veins permits viewing of your bones with a special camera. This procedure may show increased circulation to the joints in the affected area.
- Sympathetic nervous system tests – These tests look for disturbances in your sympathetic nervous system. For example, thermography measures the skin temperature and blood flow of your affected and unaffected limbs. Other tests can measure the amount of sweat on both limbs. Dissimilar results can indicate complex regional pain syndrome.
- X-rays – Loss of minerals from your bones may show up on an X-ray in later stages of the disease.
- Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) – Images captured by an MRI device may show a number of tissue changes.
If you have unexplained pain that might be wrongly diagnosed, speak to Dr. Pyles today.