It has been described as having “a boa constrictor tightening around your foot while it is being stabbed with a knife from the inside and simultaneously set on fire.” The pain is so great that those suffering from it often commit suicide to avoid further agony. This disease is called Complex Regional Pain Syndrome, or more commonly called CRPS. It is sometimes also referred to as RSD. November is CRPS awareness month.
While the exact number of people suffering from CRPS is unknown, the estimate is that anywhere from 20,000 to 200,000 people suffer. The scary thing is this is not a hereditary disease. Instead, contracting CRPS can occur from something as simple as a motor vehicle collision which causes nerve injury. CRPS is very difficult to treat, with some doctors treating it the same way they would treat a recent amputation.
Due to the severity of the injury, and the complexity of treating CRPS, juries typically return verdicts in the seven figures due to the immense pain and suffering the individual has to go through. Despite this, CRPS remains somewhat of a medical mystery, due to its difficulty in diagnosing. While most reputable medical groups such as the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke acknowledge the reality that is CRPS, insurance companies are hesitant to settle claims based on CRPS diagnosis. Instead, many insurance companies will hire “experts” from thousands of miles away to testify that CRPS is not a real disease, and is instead a manifestation of the mind of the person suffering from it. Fortunately, these experts are few and far between, and juries often come to the conclusion that the expert is wrong.