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What medicines can treat complex regional pain syndrome type 1 (CRPS-1)?

Philip Getson
Pain Medicine

There are really 4 pains of CRPS and each should be treated accordingly:

  1. Muscle pain should be treated with muscle relaxants;
  2. Inflammatory (joint type) pain  should be treated with NSAIDS or short term steroids;
  3. Burning pain pathognomonic to CRPS is treated with anti-epileptics(Lyrica, gabapentin and others); and, 
  4. Deep pure pain  requires analgesics from the mildest (tramadol) to Class II opoid (Morphine, oxycodone, etc.).

Associated pains like headaches and abdominal pains require specific medications as well. One of the great mistakes in CRPS treatment is to treat "pain" - thinking the one drug will do it all, inevitably this leads to failure.

 

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