What are the treatment options for erythromelalgia (EM)?

Treatment type and success may vary from person to person. The aim of treatment is symptom relief. In some cases, the condition may even go into remission without treatment. Avoiding things that increase one’s body temperature may be effective in preventing painful flare ups. In addition, people with EM may have to try different medications before finding what works best for them. 
Potential treatment options for erythomelalgia include:
  • Pain medications may be bought over the counter or prescribed in order to relieve pain associated with EM
  • Antidepressant medications can be effective in managing symptoms for some people with EM. Examples of types of antidepressants that may be prescribed include, tricyclic antidepressants, selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors, and serotonin norepinephrine reuptake inhibtors. 
  • Anticonvulsant medications can sometimes be beneficial in managing symptoms of EM and may be prescribed in some cases. 
  • Cooling/elevating extremities can be extremely helpful in relieving warmth, redness, swelling, and pain in the extremities. 
  • Topical ointments may be prescribed or recommended by your doctor in order to help with symptoms. 
  • Surgical sympathectomy can be beneficial when treating EM. It is a procedure in which the sympathetic nerve fibers are selectively cut.
  • Epidural infusion of opiates can help to manage pain when other methods are not effective. 
  • Sodium channel blockers are medications that work to block the sodium channels from sending increased pain signals. This can occur when the EM is caused by a mutation in the SCN9A gene. 
  • Calcium antagonists, aspirin, and magnesium are some other medications that may be used to manage symptoms of EM. 
erythromelalgia (EM) treatment

  • "Erythromelalgia.” WebMD. Medscape, 31 Jul. 2017. Web. 29 Sep. 2017. 
  • “What is EM?” The Erythromelalgia Association. TEA, n.d. Web. 29 Sep. 2017. 
  • “Erythromelalgia.” National Organization for Rare Disorders. NORD, n.d. Web. 29 Sep. 2017. 
  • “Erythromelalgia.” National Institutes of Health National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences. Genetic and Rare Diseases Information Center, n.d. Web. 29 Sep. 2017. 
  • “Erythromelalgia.” WebMD, 19 Jan. 2012. Web. 29 Sep. 2017. 
  • “erythromelalgia.” National Institutes of Health U.S. National Library of Medicine. Genetics Home Reference, 26 Sep. 2017. Web. 29 Sep. 2017. 
  • “Erythromelalgia.” Merck Sharp & Dohme Corp. Merck & Co, n.d. Web. 29 Sep. 2017.  



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