Burning Nights CRPS Support is a UK national charity dedicated to raising awareness of Complex Regional Pain Syndrome (CRPS)

McGill Pain Index / Scale for CRPS


The McGill pain index is a scale that shows the rating or level of pain. It was originally developed as the McGill pain questionnaire back in 1971 at the McGill University by 2 researchers; Ronald MELZACK and Warren TOGERSON.


The original McGill pain questionnaire in 1971 had 3 major classes of word descriptors which were:

  • Sensory – sensitivity, skin colour or temperature changes
  • Affective – how it affects you as a sufferer e.g. fear, tension
  • Evaluative – finding where the pain is
  The McGill pain questionnaire also had an intensity scale to determine the properties of pain experience of sufferers. (Melzack, R. 1975)     [Tweet theme=”tweet-string-underlined”]#CRPS is the most painful #ChronicPain condition in the world. The #Pain Scale shows u the pain levels of CRPS[/Tweet]   There are a large number of different pictorial versions of the McGill pain index for CRPS, the Burning Nights CRPS Support version is below:       CRPS Pain Scale | McGill Pain Index | CRPS reaches 42 out of 50    

CRPS / RSD is classed as the most painful chronic pain condition that is known.

It reaches approx 42 out of 50 on the McGill Pain Scale, higher than non-terminal cancer, higher than amputation of a finger without anaesthesia…  In some research it has been said that CRPS Type II can reach as high as 47 out of 50. So, why is there not much really known about this terrible chronic pain condition? Why are people suffering from this burning, stinging pain?



  • Melzack, R. (1983) ‘The McGill Pain Questionnaire,’ Pain Measurement and Assessment book. 1983. pp 41-47. Full version PDF file Available from: <http://fcesoftware.com/images/16_McGill_Pain_Questionnaire.pdf>
  • Wong, C.A. (2010) ‘Advances in labor analgesia,’ Int J Womens Health. 2009. Vol 1. pp 139-154. Available from: <http://openi.nlm.nih.gov/detailedresult.php?img=2971706_ijwh-1-139f1&req=4>

The McGill pain scale / index for CRPS is an important part of chronic or persistent pain evaluation as well as evaluating Complex Regional Pain Syndrome. The McGill Pain Index is also a good way of showing those living with CRPS and their families, friends and loved ones that not only does CRPS exist but is an extremely painful chronic pain condition.

  Last Updated: 19/07/2017  

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