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Peripheral Neuropathy

more about Peripheral Neuropathy

  • Peripheral Neuropathy is a condition characterized by a decreased function of the peripheral nerve, resulting from nerve damage or degeneration.  The peripheral nerve refers to the nerve fibers outside the brain that connect the brain and spinal cord with the various parts of body.  Damage to the nerves may result in numbness, muscle weakness, or both.

  • Paresthesia (abnormal sensations such as burning, pricking or tingling)
  • Numbness
  • Decreased sensation or complete loss of sensation, usually involving the hands or feet
  • Pain in the arms, legs, hands and feet
  • Muscle weakness or wasting

  • Mechanical injury

    1. Compression or pinching of the nerve
    2. Direct damage to the nerve that occurs from a fracture or dislocation
  • Systemic illness affecting the peripheral nerve
    1. Diabetes Mellitus
    2. Infections, such as diphteria, Leprosy, etc.
    3. Uremia
    4. Liver diseases
  • Nutritional deficiencies -- Vt B12 or Folate Deficiency
  • Chemical exposure -- Alcohol, lead, mercury, arsenic, gold, or organic compounds
  • Drug induced Neuropathy 
  • Hereditory Neuropathy

  • A peripheral Neuropathy can be diagnosed by a doctor with a neurologic exam and complete medical history.  In many individuals, there will be muscle weakness and numbness, coupled with a tingling sensation.
  • Electromyography and nerve conduction studies may be needed to confirm the diagnosis.

  • The treatment for peripheral Neuropathy depends on its underlying disease.
  • Medications for pain control -- some anti-seizure medications and anti-depressants may relieve the pain and paresthesia.
  • Physical therapy and occupational therapy to maximize the muscle power

  • Depending on the cause, severity and type of peripheral Neuropathy, the patient may fully recover or may partially recover with sequalae.  Recovery from Neuropathy is usually a slow process.

more about Peripheral Neuropathy

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