Understanding Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy and its Possible Treatments
As the fields of science and medicine have developed over time, we have become increasingly aware of more and more diseases, illnesses, and conditions. What have been mysteries in centuries past now have names, and there is the continued development of the understanding of causes, and in turn, how to treat illnesses or injuries that in the past had no such solution. While there will likely always be diseases to learn about as our society and our world continue to develop and as a result new conditions affect us, there will also be new ways to combat and cure those conditions. One such case is reflex sympathetic dystrophy, or RSD, and the varied and developing RSD treatment options that have become available since the discovery of the disease.
What is RSD and what can RSD treatment centers do?
Reflex sympathetic dystrophy is a painful chronic disorder that has many symptoms associated with it and many difficult aspects to deal with as it continues to affect an individual over time. Some things that a person suffering from RSD might encounter are swelling, sensitivity to even the lightest touch, weakness including muscle atrophy, changes or variations in skin color or temperature, noticeably abnormal sweating, and depression. Many of these factors intertwine with and cause the others, and RSD treatment is crucial in order to help the patient attempt to get back to a quality life that is more enjoyable to live. RSD treatment facilities offer a wide range of care in the hopes of bringing the most relief to the patient.
Choosing the best treatment of reflex sympathetic dystrophy
There are a number of different types of treatments when it comes to RSD, which is also referred to as complex regional pain syndrome. These methods include hot or cold therapy, various types of medication, physical therapy, biofeedback, and hyperbaric oxygen therapy. While most of those are fairly straightforward, a couple of those treatments may need further explanation.
- The less traditional forms of treatment
Biofeedback is a process that strives to retrain the body and brain. The goal of biofeedback to obtain a higher awareness of several different physiological functions with the use of instruments in order to eventually manipulate those functions at will. The instruments relay information about the activity of things like brainwaves, muscle tone, heart rate, and even the perception of pain. The goal of being able to control pain perception is one of the major reasons that biofeedback is a popular choice for the treatment of RSD.
Hyperbaric oxygen therapy
Hyperbaric oxygen therapy, usually applied in a hyperbaric pressure chamber, delivers 100% oxygen to the body. The benefits of hyperbaric oxygen therapy, or HBOT, are widely acclaimed, and one effect of the use of oxygen at that level above atmospheric pressure is that the blood has a higher capacity of oxygen transport. Hyperbaric chambers were originally hard shelled vessels, but there are now various types, so you could try out both the classic rigid and new flexible chambers to see which best fits your needs. HBOT is FDA approved and is also recognized by Medicare within the United States as a treatment that is reimbursable for 14 different conditions. Of the conditions that HBOT can be used for, included in that list are AIDS, Lyme disease, and of course, RSD.
It can be incredibly difficult for a person who has not experienced the extreme pain and discomfort of reflex sympathetic dystrophy to fully comprehend what a person goes through when suffering from the condition. But by helping to explore several different types of options for treatment, and being educated about the disease itself, as well as the possible solutions, you can offer some welcome support to a loved one who is struggling to deal with the difficult condition.