gms | German Medical Science

59th Annual Meeting of the German Society of Neurosurgery (DGNC)
3rd Joint Meeting with the Italian Neurosurgical Society (SINch)

German Society of Neurosurgery (DGNC)

1 - 4 June 2008, Würzburg

SCS (spinal cord stimulation) and the modulation of the sudomotoric output in CRPS patients’: measurement of sympathetic activity by identification of skin hydration

Der Einfluss von SCS (spinal cord stimulation) auf die Regulation der Sudomotorik bei CRPS-Patienten: Messung der Sympathikusaktivität über die Identifizierung der Hautfeuchtigkeit

Meeting Abstract

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  • corresponding author D. Klase - Universitätsklinikum Schleswig-Holstein, Campus Lübeck, Klinik für Neurochirurgie
  • V. Tronnier - Universitätsklinikum Schleswig-Holstein, Campus Lübeck, Klinik für Neurochirurgie

Deutsche Gesellschaft für Neurochirurgie. Società Italiana di Neurochirurgia. 59. Jahrestagung der Deutschen Gesellschaft für Neurochirurgie e.V. (DGNC), 3. Joint Meeting mit der Italienischen Gesellschaft für Neurochirurgie (SINch). Würzburg, 01.-04.06.2008. Düsseldorf: German Medical Science GMS Publishing House; 2008. DocP 098

The electronic version of this article is the complete one and can be found online at:

Published: May 30, 2008

© 2008 Klase et al.
This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License ( You are free: to Share – to copy, distribute and transmit the work, provided the original author and source are credited.



Objective: Disorders of the autonomic nervous system (ANS) are not uncommon and often result in chronic diseases refractory to usual therapy strategies. For example CRPS type I and II, palmar or axillary hyperhidrosis and Raynaud’s syndrome are significantly caused by affected or misdirected sympathetic nerve fibres. Often the degree of impairment of the sympathetic nervous system decides on the response to medication or interventional methods like SCS. On this account both the primary detection of sympathetic malfunction and follow-up of SCS influence with a less invasive and manageable diagnostic technique would be helpful.

Methods: 3 patients with iatrogenic or post-traumatic CRPS I/II of the upper limb were recruited using the criteria described by the IASP. Implantation of cervical SCS was performed in all patients. With a mean follow-up of 6 months hydration of the epidermis (stratum corneum) of the finger pads was determined using a non-invasive, skin capacitance meter (Corneometer® CM 825, Courage+Khazaka, Köln, Germany). Affected and normal hands were compared without and under SCS influence.

Results: In each patient differences between CRPS affected hand and contralateral side could be demonstrated. In 2 patients preliminary postoperative data show an approximation of the values between healthy and affected extremities under spinal cord stimulation.

Conclusions: Measurement of epidermal hydration is easy applicable and seems to be a good method to document disbalances of the sudomotoric output in patients with sympathetic maintened disorders like CRPS. Moreover, generally follow-up of the modulative effects of SCS therapy on sympathetic activity could be possible.