What is the prognosis of complex regional pain syndrome (CRPS)?

Updated: Jun 20, 2018
  • Author: Gaurav Gupta, MD; Chief Editor: Stephen A Berman, MD, PhD, MBA  more...
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Answer

Approximately 80% of patients with CRPS type I achieve complete, spontaneous relief of signs and symptoms within 18 months; however, no diagnostic criteria have been shown to predict which patients will fall into this category. Some of the patients whose symptoms do not resolve spontaneously may still be cured by treatment.

Of the patients who develop refractory CRPS type I, 50-80% have disability secondary to pain and/or a limited range of motion. The main disabilities are limitations in their activities of daily living (ADL).

Prolonged symptoms and signs, trophic changes, and primarily cold CRPS type I are all associated with a higher chance of poor outcomes and disability.


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