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Disabil Rehabil. 2000 Jun 15;22(9):387-98.

Outcome measures for complex regional pain syndrome type I: an overview in the context of the international classification of impairments, disabilities and handicaps.

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  • 1Institute of Rehabilitation Medicine, Erasmus University Rotterdam/University Hospital Rotterdam, The Netherlands.



To determine the availability of relevant and objective outcome measures concerning complex regional pain syndrome type I (CRPS I) for rehabilitation medicine.


Outcome measures were classified according to the International Classification of Impairments, Disabilities and Handicaps. For each outcome measure a description of concept, operationalization into variables and instrument was given. We performed a PUBMED MEDLINE search (1980-1998) using the following keywords: complex regional pain syndrome, reflex sympathetic dystrophy, impairment, disability, handicap, (long-term) outcome and effect/efficacy.


Most outcome measures were concentrated on impairments, whereas measures at the level of disabilities and handicaps, the most relevant levels for rehabilitation medicine, were mentioned in very few studies. Objective outcome measures were merely found at the level of impairment.


The results indicate a need for the development of relevant outcome measures at the level of disabilities and handicaps that can objectively measure treatment efficacy for CRPS I.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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