Today, the term ‘dystrophy’ is replaced by complex regional pain syndrome or CRPS.

It is a pain syndrome with several symptoms, reaching several systems, one or more extremities of any part of the body.

Origin & causes

This syndrome is common and affects more than 10% of the traumatized.

The trauma is sometimes minimal. There is no cure, the CRPS usually heals alone but lasts from a few months to several years.

It evolves in two phases: hot with edema then cold.


The term complex reflects the diversity of symptoms.

It is a vascular and nervous disorder.
CRPS or algodystrophy can be a component of a disease (carpal tunnel, infarction …) or more often after trauma with or without intervention.
Edema, heat, pain, impotence are the main symptoms.

This syndrome is more common in young women. Stress and anxiety are not the causes of RSDS. It affects all ages of the child to the elderly person.

Treatments for algodystrophy

Antalgic treatment and physiotherapy are the most important. They aim to preserve mobility and shorten the duration of CRPS.
Careful evaluation of the syndrome can improve management.

Other treatments also aim to shorten the duration of the syndrome:

  • articular infiltration or in the under acromial space
  • sympathetic nervous system blocks (called ‘sympathetic’)
  • continuous analgesic block, epidural.
  • neurostimulation

Some are specialized treatments in treatment and pain management centers.

You can contact Dr. BANCO Philippe, a pain doctor at the Union clinic who practices these routinely