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August 1984

Iatrogenic CausalgiaClassification, Clinical Findings, and Legal Ramifications

Author Affiliations

From the Department of Medicine, Division of Neurology, Long Island Jewish-Hillside Medical Center, New Hyde Park, NY.

Arch Neurol. 1984;41(8):821-824. doi:10.1001/archneur.1984.04050190027009

• Eleven patients had causalgia that resulted from surgical procedures or improperly placed injections. It is the intense, unremitting, burning quality of the pain that distinguishes causalgia from other nerve injury sequelae. The mode of injury, as well as the symptoms and signs and their duration, suggests that the recent tendency to divide causalgia into "major" and "minor" forms on the basis of its occurrence during war or peace, with or without autonomic dysfunction, is improper. Most of these patients have sought legal redress. All cases for which the legal issues are complete have been settled in favor of the plaintiffs.