Diagnosis - Complex regional pain syndrome

There's no single test for complex regional pain syndrome (CRPS). It's usually diagnosed by ruling out other conditions that have similar symptoms.

Some of the tests you may have to rule out other conditions can include:

A physical examination may also be carried out by your GP or another specialist to check for physical signs of CRPS, such as swelling and changes to your skin's temperature and appearance. Any physical exam should be gentle so it doesn't increase your pain.

A diagnosis of CRPS can usually be made if you have clear symptoms of the condition and no other possible cause can be found.


If you're diagnosed with CRPS, or if the diagnosis is uncertain, you'll usually be referred to a local specialist pain clinic. These are mostly located within hospitals.

Referrals are ideally made as soon as possible to ensure treatment can be started quickly, because treatment may reduce unnecessary suffering.

Page last reviewed: 16/05/2016
Next review due: 01/05/2019