Complex regional pain syndrome type I treated with topical capsaicin: A case report

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

17 Citations (Scopus)


This report describes the case of a multitrauma patient who underwent an amputation of the left arm and had a complicated left crural fracture with a delayed union. He was treated in an inpatient setting for preprosthetic training for a myoelectric prosthesis and to regain walking abilities. After consolidation of the crural fracture, complex regional pain syndrome type I (CRPS I) developed in the left foreleg, which hindered mobilization. Topical capsaicin .075% was prescribed and a stress-loading mobilization schema was instituted. No other treatment modalities directed at CRPS I were added. After 6 weeks, no signs or symptoms of CRPS I were present and capsaicin was discontinued. Capsaicin is a well-accepted and documented treatment modality in neuropathic pain states such as postherpetic neuralgia. However, it has rarely been described in CRPS I. Capsaicin is discussed within the framework of recent insights in the neurobiology of nociception, and it is concluded that it may provide a theory-driven treatment for CRPS I, especially in the acute stage, that facilitates physical therapy and prevents peripheral and spinal sensitization.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)851-852
Number of pages2
JournalArchives of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2001

Research programs

  • EMC MUSC-01-46-01


Dive into the research topics of 'Complex regional pain syndrome type I treated with topical capsaicin: A case report'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this