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Recently Funded RSDSA Research

Dr. T. Coderre: Salivary Oxidative Analysis for Improving the Understanding and Diagnosis of CRPS-I: Use of Near Infrared Spectroscopy to Study Muscle Oxygenation in CRPS-I Arms
Findings of studies supported by Rachel Tobias Award to Drs. Marie-Christine Ross-Huot and Terence Coderre.

RSDSA Grant Application Instructions
The RSDSA of America entertains grant proposals of high quality at any time; there are no specific deadlines for application.

Translational Research Workshops
Activated Glia: Targets for the Treatment of Neuropathic Pain,
October 7-9, 2011
View conference papers: of Glial Conference

Imaging Neuroinflammation and Neuropathic Pain, October 13-15, 2011

RSDSA Research

RSDSA to Fund a New Opportunity in Clinical Research for CRPS Care

2010 Rachel Tobias Pain Research Young Investigator Award

2009 Rachel Tobias Young Pain Research Investigator Award

Final Report and Lay Summary
Body perception disturbances in Complex Regional Pain Syndrome

RSDSA Launches Major Study on the Natural History and Long-Term Health Effects of CRPS

Final Report: RSDSA and RSDhope Grant
(Related: RSDSA and American RSDHope Award Research Grant to the Children's Hospital of Los Angeles)

Recent RSDSA-funded Research

Author: Sharma A, Agarwal S, Broatch J, Raja SN
Title: A Web-Based Cross-Sectional Epidemiological Survey of Complex Regional Pain Syndrome
Source: Reg Anesth Pain Med. 2009;34(2):110-115.

Remission and Recurrence of Complex Regional Pain Syndrome: Analysis of a Web-based Survey

2007-2008 Tobias Grant Fosters the Intersection of Engineering and Medicine in CRPS Diagnosis and Treatment

Author: Siegel SM, Lee JW, Oaklander AL
Title: Needlestick Distal Nerve Injury in Rats Models Symptoms of Complex Regional Pain Syndrome
Source: International Anesthesia Research Society. 2007;105:1820-1829.
Supported by Public Health Service grant NINDS R01NS42866, The Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy Association of America, and the National Organization for Rare Disorders.

The Rachel Tobias Young Pain Research Investigator Awarded to Oaklander and Lee
Contralesional mirror-pain and nerve damage; investigation of mechanisms in the DNI rat model of CRPS, Drs. Oaklander and Lee, Harvard Medical School.

Author: Agarwal S, Broatch J, Raja SN
Title: Web-based Epidemiological Survey of Complex Regional Pain Syndrome
A demographically-based epidemiological clinical study on CRPS diagnosis and treatment.

Clinical Study at Beth Israel Medical Center, New York
Pilot Study on Safety and Efficacy of the Non-Invasive Transcranial Stimulation to Relieve Neuropathic Pain in Patients with CRPS. Click here for details.
View the interim report of the study here.

Research Opportunities

CRPS Research Study in San Diego
RSDSA has received information about an exciting new CRPS Research Study being conducted by the UCSD Center for Brain and Cognition. They are currently looking for study participants in the San Diego area. For details please email UCSD lab at: or call weekdays 858.534.6240.

Pain Narrative Study
This survey is part of a project studying how pain patient narratives are perceived by others and how these stories impact their treatment. The University of Southern California Health Sciences Campus Institutional Review Board has determined that this research is exempt. How to Participate

We will first ask you a little bit about yourself. Then you will read several vignettes (short stories) from people describing their experiences with chronic pain. For each of these vignettes we will ask you questions about the impression you get of the person. If you would like to participate, please go to

Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS) study for CRPS at Stanford
For patients with Chronic Regional Pain Syndrome (CRPS) or Reflect Sympathetic Dystrophy (RSD). Contact: Gabriela at 650.723.3032 or email:

Other Clinical Research Studies

The Accurate Study
The purpose of the ACCURATE study is to evaluate the safety and efficacy of the Axium Neurostimulation System for the treatment of chronic neuropathic lower limb pain due to CRPS or post-surgical nerve damage. Patients must be 22-75, have chronic lower limb pain for more than 6 months and have not previously used a spinal cord stimulator for their chronic pain. The trial is free for participants and patients are able to keep the permanent device, once the temporary device shows benefit to the patient.
Randomized Controlled Trial of Ketamine Infusion With Continuous Epidural Infusion for Treatment of Complex Regional Pain Syndrome Current Clinical Trials Regarding CRPS

Clinical trials for Complex regional pain syndrome on NHS Choices
Information provided by WHO International Clinical Trials Registry

Regional Anesthesia Military Battlefield Pain Outcomes Study (RAMBPOS)
The purpose of this study is to examine the short and long-term benefits of implementing early advanced regional anesthesia techniques for pain control, such as reducing pain disability and the incidence and severity of mental health disorders, following major traumatic injuries to extremities encountered during combat in the Iraqi/Afghanistan war.

New Study at Vanderbilt for Teens Suffering with Chronic Pain
Vanderbilt researchers are looking for volunteers to participate in a study evaluating the effectiveness of support groups for improving emotional and physical well being in teenage girls ages 12-18 with chronic pain. No cost therapy groups will be available to all research participants and will be held at the Osher Center for Integrative Medicine at Vanderbilt. Participation involves completing questionnaires and heart rate monitoring (30 mins at 4 time points) and attending therapy sessions (1.5 hours weekly for 6 weeks). For more information, please contact Rachel Aaron at

Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS) for CRPS
We are conducting a small "pilot" study to determine whether Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS) can help the symptoms of Complex Regional Pain Syndrome (CRPS). We hope to use this information to guide future larger studies to test this as a potential new treatment.

General Knowledge

What is CPRS?
CRPS: Fact and Fiction
Summary of the NINDS State of the Science Meeting

Clinical Trials
From In Pain, Out of Work, and Can't Pay The Bills

Medifocus Guide to Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy Syndrome
A resource guide for the person with CRPS. Each guide has current and relevant CRPS research organized into categories for easy reading. Free updates are provided for 1 year.

Curing Chronic Pain—Hope on the horizon?
By Linda Watkins, PhD

ResearchMatch is a not-for-profit effort that brings together researchers and people who are willing to learn more about research studies via a secure and convenient online web portal.

ResearchMatch has a simple goal - to bring together two groups of people who are looking for one another: (1) people who are trying to find research studies, and (2) researchers who are looking for people to participate in their studies.  It is a free and secure registry that has been developed by major academic institutions across the country who want to involve you in the mission of helping today's studies make a real difference for everyone's health in the future.

Evidence Reports

Spreading of complex regional pain syndrome: not a random

Does CRPS-I spread from the original site of appearance?
Is Spinal Cord Stimulation useful in the management of CRPS?
Is CRPS-I associated with malignancy?

WBZ News Radio show (12 MB mp3)
Jordan Rich's interview with Anne Louise Oaklander, MD, PhD, director of the Nerve Injury Unit at Massachusetts General Hospital, April 2006.

New Study Finds Nerve Damage in CRPS
Researchers at Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) have found the first evidence of a physical abnormality underlying CRPS I. In the February 2005 issue of the journal Pain, they describe finding that skin affected by CRPS-I pain appears to have lost some small-fiber nerve endings, a change characteristic of other neuropathic pain syndromes.

And a Little Mollusk Shall Lead Us
By Ying Ju Sung, PhD

Updated January 22, 2015

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