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Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy (RSD) (CRPS) Message Board

Brachial Plexus Infusion/block

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Old 10-23-2009, 06:47 PM   #1
Join Date: Feb 2009
Location: Pacific Northwest
Posts: 309
harmony85 HB User
Brachial Plexus Infusion/block

My doctor referred me to the rehab. institute of seattle and wants me to try this treatment. I'm really nervous about having it done because I've had rsd for so long and it's traveled and gotten worse to the point that I've been told nothing would help because it's just been to long.
I looked at the different studies that were done with this treatment but unfortunately with people who have had rsd symptoms for longer than 6 months either saw very small results or none at all. I'm going on 3 years this spring. I'm WAY past the 6 months.
Has anyone had this treatment? Did it work? The side effects can be pretty nasty and I would have to stay at the hospital for a minimum of a month if not longer because of the progression of the rsd.
Looking for any answers about this treatment. I found through hours of looking at trials and medical journals that 99% of the time the infusion and or block is done with Liquid Clonidine and bupivacaine.
I have heard of Clonidine but not the other.
Has anyone had either. The side effects with the liquid medicine is pretty nasty too,you take that on top of the side effects and risks of the infusion it self and it could be hairy so to speak.
Thanks for the replies. Stay warm. Hoping everyone isn't having as stressful day as me. I just found out this has been approved by the w/c self insurance and I only have a small window to decide if I want to go ahead with the treatment. I don't live even close to seattle so that's one thing I have to consider too. Although it's not on the top of the list.
Thanks again,sorry to ramble,just really at a loss of what I should do.

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Old 10-24-2009, 04:21 PM   #2
Senior Veteran
Join Date: May 2002
Location: NY
Posts: 3,185
sharon1030 HB User
Smile Re: Brachial Plexus Infusion/block

Hi Deanne,

I have bupivicaine in my pump. I think it helps me much more than the morphine. It helps with the sensitivity, color and temp changes. I thought it had helped with the sweating. I didn't have that for 8 years. This past March, my pump catheter moved from where it had been and I wasn't getting the meds at the right place, dose, etc and went through withdrawal. Anyway, I've gotten a new pump, but the sweating is still there. I'm hoping that my body just has to calm down again (from not getting the right dose for up to 6 months or so) and maybe it takes time. Who knows? Nobody knows for sure!

Anyway, that's my story on bupivacaine. Good luck with your decision.


Old 10-25-2009, 01:54 PM   #3
Join Date: Feb 2009
Location: Pacific Northwest
Posts: 309
harmony85 HB User
Re: Brachial Plexus Infusion/block


Thanks for the reply. I'm really starting to think that I'm not the right candidate for this. I'm suppose to get the block not the permanent pump,but it's still scary and everything I keep hearing make me feel that my chances aren't very good. I've been in pain for so long and I've read the studies and trials of this block and the people who have been in pain for a year or more don't get much help at all if any and the staff infection percentage is through the roof. I'm hoping to talk to my doctor tomorrow and really talk about the rates and percentages of actually coming out of this better. I want to try and stay positive but when nothing for years doesn't ever work you start to wonder if it's really worth going through everything that comes with doing a procedure.
Thanks again for your input. Every little bit helps.
Take care and stay warm,

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