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Physical Therapy in Massapequa

Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy

If you are suffering from reflex sympathetic dystrophy, otherwise known as complex regional pain syndrome, our physical therapists in Massapequa here at Park Physical Therapy may be able to help. Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy (RSD) is a rare condition of the nervous system that causes severe pain usually throughout the arms, but sometimes to the legs or hips.

The symptoms of RSD are defined by three stages:

  • Acute: burning, flushing, swelling, sweating, pain, and tenderness. This can show up early through x-rays.
  • Dystrophic: early skin changes of shiny, thickened skin and contracture with persistent pain. Decreased swelling and flushing.
  • Atrophic: loss of motion or function, and thinning of the fatty layers of skin.

If you have shown some of these symptoms, you might have RSD. RSD is better to detect early on, so you can begin treatment immediately. There are two types of RSD: type 1 is caused by illness or injury that did not directly damage the nerve (including heart disease, surgery, or stroke, among others), while type 2 is rarer and is caused by a distinct nerve injury. Over 90 percent of RSD patients suffer from type 1.

Our physical therapists in Massapequa can help treat your RSD. The different therapies used to treat RSD include desensitization and a series of exercises that can re-strengthen the muscles. The sooner you treat RSD the better, as the pain gets worse over time, and can become permanent if not treated as soon as possible.  We at Park Physical Therapy will try and help you regain your strength in the affected limbs or areas, as this is a rare, painful and often misunderstood condition that is often overlooked, and we want to help you in whatever way we can.