Is Regional Pain Syndrome the Same as Prostatitis?


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Regional pain syndrome is a rare, painful, and long-lasting condition that can cause severe, constant burning in an affected arm or leg (or hands or feet). It is considered to be one of the possible causes of chronic prostatitis. Like chronic prostatitis, regional pain syndrome is not very well understood and the two conditions may be related in some way.

Symptoms of regional pain syndrome may appear after an injury, surgery, heart attack, or stroke, but there also can be no sign of injury or neurological damage. It most often affects people between 40 and 60 years old and is more common among women. Also called complex regional pain syndrome, this uncommon form of chronic pain most often affects an arm or leg, but it can affect the pelvic region as well. The pain is usually out of proportion to the seriousness of the initial injury, if there is one. It can lead to muscle tightening and the formation of myofascial trigger points.

There are two types of regional pain syndrome. About 90% of the people with regional pain syndrome have type 1, meaning the regional pain began after an illness that did not directly damage the nerves in the affected area (such as a small injury or sprained ankle with no nerve damage). The less-common type 2 follows a distinct nerve injury from a severe infection, surgery, or bone break.

Experts do not fully understand how regional pain syndrome is triggered, but they believe it may be due to a dysfunctional interaction between the patient’s central and peripheral nervous system and also due to an inappropriate inflammatory response. Emotional stress can play a role in the formation of this syndrome just as it does for chronic prostatitis.

If you are suffering from extreme pain in the pelvic region that seems out of proportion to any cause you can identify, your doctors may consider regional pain syndrome. Having myofascial trigger points is extremely common in men with chronic pelvic pain, so trying a variety of alternative chronic prostatitis and pelvic pain treatments such as trigger point release therapy can be helpful to you. Other ways to treat of chronic prostatitis that is associated with regional pain syndrome involve physical therapy and pain control. If you have pain and pelvic floor tension, doing behavioral modification with biofeedback therapy is also very helpful. You can apply ice backs or heat therapy. You doctor may suggest transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation (TENS), which involves applying electrical impulses to nerve endings (depending on where your pain is located). Stress management techniques (such as meditation, exercise, and even yoga) can help you find relief. You most likely will need to employ several different kinds of treatments to successfully treat chronic prostatitis that is related to regional pain syndrome.