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Date of Award


Degree Type

Thesis (On-Campus Access Only)

Degree Name

Master of Science in Clinical Psychology (MSCP)

Committee Chair

Maryka Biaggio, PhD


This paper reviews the literature on the reflex sympathetic dystrophy (RSD) syndrome and the proposed role of specific personality characteristics in the etiology of RSD. A brief history of RSD is followed by a review and critique of various theories regarding its etiology, including a discussion of the role played by personality characteristics. The author concludes that a correlation between specific personality characteristics and RSD is likely but that the evidence to date has not been conclusive. Recommendations for the adoption of a prototype model of RSD and for future research are included.