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Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy (RSD) (CRPS) Message Board

RSD, CRPS, Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy, Complex Regional Pain Syndrome


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Old 06-30-2013, 11:54 AM   #1
Rose259
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Smile RSD, CRPS, Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy, Complex Regional Pain Syndrome

Yes, I successfully cured/healed RSD! It is possible!
I effectively "cured" RSD with holistic treatments. I encourage anyone who suffers with RSD consider the holistic regime I created for myself. You can do it too.
Brief explanation of my RSD journey:
Once, I, too, suffered severe Type II Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy to my right foot and entire right leg up to my hip which presented itself after auto accident injuries stemming from both fractures and a ruptured plantar fascia in my right foot.

I was fortunate I had an early diagnosis (from my Chinese Doctor, who called it "nerve damage" and was first to diagnose RSD. Only because I was "pro-active" and pursued another opinion regarding my symptoms outside the closed box of conventional/allopathic medicine, which was the only treatment medical insurance will pay for.

After my initial nerve damage diagnosis, I brought this vital diagnosis to my allopathic doctors (who actually missed diagnosing it despite my detailed description of the pain and symptoms) who then concurred with my Chinese doctor's diagnosis and for the first time in my life I heard the words Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy or RSD.

I refused allopathic treatment of RSD (4-6 "nerve block" treatments were recommended to begin by several MDs, including anesthesiologists, sports medicine doctors and Podiatrists). Why? Intuitively speaking, I considered the nerve block procedures to be far too invasive and risky, and which required general anesthesia (additional risks), the use of a fluoroscope (unhealthy exposure of radiation), injections of cortisone and a long acting local anesthetic marcaine, and worse, the end results were NOT at all promising.

Instead, I committed myself to a more holistic approach toward healing because I trusted the wisdom of the body's ability to heal.

Immediately upon my nerve damage diagnosis, about 6 weeks after the auto accident, I began my daily regime of holistic treatments, which included acupuncture, naprapathy, osteopathy, physical therapy, physical exercise physiotheraphy which I did for the next 6 months. (As a precaution, in case I did not gain immediate results from my holistic regime, I did arrange advanced appointments with an anesthesiologist to perform nerve blocks. However, I later canceled these appointments because I began to gain positive results relatively soon after I began my holistic regime to heal RSD.

After the first six months of intense daily regime of holistic treatments, my acute and horrible symptoms slowly began to disappear. Gradually, the dark reddish-brown discoloration of my foot and leg began to fade, the inflamation/swelling slowly began to reduce, and the distorted and abnormal shape of my right leg and foot improved (which my husband likened to a "slab of red meat" that "looked like something hanging in a butcher shop"). The over the top excruciating nerve pain (which was off the charts, not in the 1 to 10 range, when asked I rated it "100+++!") to the slightest touch or even a sheet touching my foot was far too painful to bear, slowly began to dissipate into the 1 to 10 range. The complete loss of normal ambulatory function with my right leg and foot (I required a wheel chair or crutches to hobble around on my left leg) began to slowly improve after much treatment and with my determination to be pain free, to walk, run and dance again, I "pushed through the pain" with the physiotherapy machines and "re-learn" how to walk again. I literally reprogramed my brain to walk again.

About six months into my holistic regime, I was again able to walk on my right leg and foot without the aid of a cane or crutches. However, each time I flexed my right foot to walk, it was painful, far too painful to walk long distances. I rated it an 8 on the 1 to 10 scale when asked by an anesthesiologist which I deemed completely unacceptable live with the rest of my life.

This anesthesiologist, with whom I had a 6 months post-RSD diagnosis exam (for medical insurance purposes) was the director of the pain clinic at Kaiser Hospital in Sacramento, CA. This anesthesiologist, who would have otherwise performed nerve block treatments on me had I surrendered to them, wrote in my medical records, "patient sought alternative treatments with acupuncture, osteopathy, naprpathy for treatment for RSD and achieved remarkable results..." My Kaiser podiatrist wrote, "patient had miraculous recovery from RSD with holistic treatments..." My Kaiser internist, my private St. Francis Sports Medicine, a medical doctor, my Kaiser physical therapist all wrote similar comments in my medical records which not only validated my intuition to take the risk to explore holistic treatments but provided substantiation that they were effective and beneficial which forced my Farmer's Auto insurance company to eventually pay for my holistic treatments which were all rejected. Two years later I was reimbursed for all my holistic treatment costs.

I want to offer another perspective into the closed, blocked mindset dogma of allopathic medicine and doctors. During my final exam with the anesthesiologist
(as previously mentioned), although this doctor was quite expressive about her amazement of my then-recovery with RSD, she still remained stuck in her dogma when we discussed my pain level. She actually told me that I had reached the limitations of any more recovery because I had passed the 6 months window of time for nerve damage. She said, "I am sorry but I am afraid you will have to learn to live with the pain."

This director of Kaiser's Pain Clinic which treats RSD patients continued to reinforce her assessment that I would not improve, that I reached the limits of any possible recovery. She told me how lucky I was, how much better off I am than most of RSD patients who never get better and only worsen, etc., and I assumed she meant that I would waste my time and money if I continued with holistic treatment.

She shook her head when I told her I wanted to continue with acupuncture treatments until I was completely pain free. She may have meant well and didn't want me to have high hopes of recovery and then experience failure, or whatever. This anesthesiologist, who performs nerve block treatments, gave me all the information of what she knew based upon her 20+ years of experiences with RSD patients.

Fortunately, I did NOT accept her prognosis. Instead, I passionately said, "Doctor, I trust the wisdom of the body to heal and I shall continue with acupuncture treatments until I am completely 100% pain-free. I'll be damned if I willing to live with this pain and can't go for long walks, run or dance the rest of my life because a jerk ran a stop sign and plowed into me!"

Her expression spoke volumes. She was a bit astounded by what I said but not one word of encouragement was spoken. There was a long uncomfortable pause between us. Finally, I said, "One day I will return and prove to you that I am pain free and then you can bring in an acupuncturist, a naprapath, and an osteopath into your pain clinic to help RSD patients.

It took another six months of treatment before I was completely pain free and before my right leg matched the color and size of my left leg. My internist/primary doctor was thrilled by my recovery and accredited it primarily to my "positive attitude and determination." Kaiser wasn't interested in accepting my recovery was due to holistic treatments. Instead, it was just considered "miraculous" remission of RSD which, of course, does NOT give any credit to all the beneficial holistic treatments I had.

I am still pain free after 11 years and walk miles daily and go dancing twice every week. I am grateful for all of my holistic doctors, I hope my allopathic doctor learned from my experiences and success with curing RSD.

 
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Old 07-01-2013, 06:46 AM   #2
Shelbie
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Re: RSD, CRPS, Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy, Complex Regional Pain Syndrome

Thank you so much for writing your story. It gives me hope that one day I can beat this horrible monster. When I first read up on acupuncture I was terrified of the needle factor (possible spreading). Even read other patients stories on how it made the RSD worse. Mine started from a total knee replacement. The pain was about 2 inches above the knee down to 2 inches above ankle. I was grateful it wasn't in my foot but then it spread to my other leg and both feet and it has crawled up my thighs. I have tried so many drugs which did nothing for the pain. I have gone from doc to doc which almost everyone told me RSD does not spread and they immediately suggest the Spinal Cord Stimulator (which is not an option for me).
I will revisit my lengthy notes on finding a doc for acupuncture therapy. Trust is now a big issue for me because of the way traditional doctors have treated me. I am also interested in the naprapathic approach. It sounds like you had a plan and went for it. I'm wondering how you found your acupuncturist? I hate the brick walls I get when calling a doc to ask if they know about RSD.
Thanks again, I cried when reading ur post, now I have my homework to do.

 
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Old 07-12-2013, 09:01 PM   #3
back2beach
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Re: RSD, CRPS, Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy, Complex Regional Pain Syndrome

I am so glad to see your story! I too have RSD "in remission" for four years now. Developed in left leg, from the knee down, following toe surgery. LIke you, I got proactive and sought out acupuncture, physical therapy (to retrain my foot to function and balance), but also take Neurontin in about 1/3 of typical dosage.
It's been OK, with manageable discomfort and fully functional. Am now have a flare up with it due to a trauma on front of leg 2 weeks ago, but I know it can improve, because I've seen it happen!!

Your story is fabulous and I'm so happy for you, and other people need to know this can be done!!!)

 
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