Neuropathy Q & A
What are the symptoms of neuropathy?
Neuropathy results when your peripheral nerves, those that extend into your arms and legs, cease to function properly.
When there are issues with these nerves, you may experience:
- Tingling and prickling
- Not being able to distinguish between hot and cold
- Loss of coordination
- Shooting pain
- Lack of fine motor skills
In extreme cases of neuropathy, and especially with patients who don’t seek treatment, you may experience severe complications like ulcers, infections, and gangrene.
If your neuropathy impacts your autonomic nerves, instead of your peripheral nerves, you may experience problems with how your body functions. You may notice issues with sweating, temperature, bowel and bladder control, and blood pressure.
What causes neuropathy?
Neuropathy can result from a number of issues and sometimes the underlying cause remains unknown (called idiopathic neuropathy).
Your neuropathy may be caused by:
- Diabetes (the most common cause of chronic peripheral neuropathy)
- Chronic kidney disease
- Infections, especially Shingles, HIV, and Lyme disease
- Guillain-Barre syndrome
- Autoimmune disorders like rheumatoid arthritis and systemic lupus erythematosus
- Injuries and trauma to the nerves
- Some cancers
Sometimes medications, especially those given during chemotherapy and HIV treatments, can result in unintended neuropathy, as can deficiencies in B vitamins or folates. Excessive alcohol consumption and poisons like those found in insecticides and solvents can also impact your nerves.
Can neuropathy be treated?
To treat your neuropathy, Dr. Singh must address its underlying cause. In some cases, neuropathy can’t be reversed. In these situations, your doctor offers symptomatic relief and works to prevent further damage.
If you’re a diabetic, you must learn to manage your blood glucose levels, reducing the level of sugar in your bloodstream. In cases of injury or trauma, Dr. Singh identifies where your nerve is compromised and works to relieve the pressure on the nerve. When your neuropathy results from toxins or medication, often removing the catalyst improves your neuropathy and stops it from progressing.
In some cases, Dr. Singh recommends medication to relieve the pain associated with neuropathy and reduce its symptoms.
When numbness starts to impact your life, it’s time to find a professional solution. Call Dr. Singh’s office today or go online to schedule your appointment.