Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Treatment for Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy ( RSD ) may be right arouind the corner

Good Morning everyone! Today I would like to address RSDS / RSD. This is something I have been dealing with for over 15 years. As I stated in earlier posts I have 6 forms of arthritis. I was just diagnosed with the sixth form last week. As you may or may not know any form of arthritis comes with chronic pain as does RSD. What is RSD? What is CRPS? Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy , RSD, Complex Regional Pain Syndrome, CRPS, burning pain. This disease causes severe pain. Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy ( RSD ) is a chronic pain disorder associated with sensitivity to light touch, swelling, skin color and temperature changes, weakness, abnormal sweating, muscle atrophy, and subsequent depression. This disease is believed to be caused by and injury to a limb. Fortunately for RSD sufferers have options to relieve the pain. Hyperbaric oxygen therapy has proven to offer tremendous relief for suffers of RSDS , HBOT can provide an effective treatment.

Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy, is an FDA approved therapy, but unfortunately it is not yet approved for treating RSD and CRPS, but expected to be approved for RSDS. This treatment works by utilizing 100% oxygen administered under increased pressure. It is a very safe, painless, and a cost effective means of treating the chronic debilitating pain of RSD and CRPS.

Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy has proven itself to be a very viable option to treat reflex sympathetic dystrophy (RSD). Numerous articles in the medical literature have shown the reduction in pain and swelling associated with RSD and a return of function using hyperbaric oxygen. Best of all for RSD patients, this is accomplished without the need for painful injections, narcotics, or surgical implants for pain management. Most RSD sufferers find that following the first few treatments they are able to achieve a full night’s sleep for the first time in years. They then notice the decreased need for narcotics, improved thinking, with a diminished depression. The swelling of the effected arm or leg associated with RSD diminishes and they are able to start physical therapy with marked improvement in muscle strength. Many people afflicted with RSD have then been able to return to a happier and more productive life, frequently returning to their prior occupation.

There are FOUR Main Symptoms/Criteria for a diagnosis of CRPS/RSDS:
Constant chronic burning pain.
Spasms-in blood vessels and muscles of the extremities
Insomnia/Emotional Disturbance (including limbic system changes)
Not all four symptoms are required for a diagnosis but most patients do have at least three out of the four at any one time.

Boost chronic pain relief with the natural endorphins from exercise.
Endorphins are brain chemicals that help improve your mood while also blocking pain signals. Exercise has another pain-reducing effect -- it strengthens muscles, helping prevent re-injury and further pain. Plus, exercise can help keep your weight down, reduce heart disease risk, and control blood sugar levels -- especially important if you have diabetes. Ask your doctor for an exercise routine that is right for you. If you have certain health conditions, like diabetic neuropathy, you will need to be careful about the types of activities you engage in; your doctor can advise you on the best physical activities for you. There is a wonderful site that is very informative The Amercian RSD Hope.............. This site provides answers to most of your questions about the disease and pain releif options. I urge you to talk to your doctors to see if HOT could be helpful with your chronic pain.

The American RSDHope is a non-profit organization dedicated to increasing awareness of this little known disease and helping patients and their loved ones to cope with the myriad problems that accompany it. This is one of the best sites for answers that I have ever looked over.


Mara said...

I have read alot about HBOT and in 2005 after suffering for 11 years I found the Sun Ancon Chi Machine and found its movement and its assistance with improving circulation and oxygenation is why the Chi Machine helped me with my chronic pain from RSD. I have also read several articles on oxygenation and pain and do believe oxygenation, circulation, and then physical therapy is the key to getting better.

Greta said...

Melinda, until you commented on my blog I had never heard of RSD, even though I've been a social worker in 3 teaching hospitals.

I'll be following your blog, not only to be better informed in general but b/c Mike has RA in his hands (hemochromatosis-related) and I've had foot surgery 3 times b/c of arthritis.