What Is Neuropathy And Can I Treat It?
Neuropathy is a disorder, which relates to the malfunctioning of the peripheral nerves, due to either injury or disease. The symptoms associated with neuropathy include:
- Severe and stabbing pain
- Tingling sensation or numbness in the feet or hands
- Excessive sweating
- Tremors or weakness
- Neck muscle stiffness
- A considerable decrease in blood pressure
- Sexual dysfunction (usually in men)
- Constipation or diarrhea
The diagnosis involves a neurological examination, evaluation of medical history, blood tests, nerve function test, and skin/nerve biopsy.
The basic focus of neuropathic treatment is to deal with the causes of a disorder. For instance, if diabetes is being diagnosed as a major cause of neuropathy, controlling the blood glucose level is essential. Hence, providing the right type of treatment can ensure a long lasting relief. Here are some of the treatments, which are in use to treat this disorder.
Following are the medical treatments that have been administered to the patients suffering from neuropathy.
These types of medications include pregabalin (Lyrica) and gabapentin (Gralise, Neurontin), which are commonly used to treat epilepsy. The patient experiences a considerable relief from nerve pain.
Acetaminophen (Tylenol) and non-steroidal drugs (anti-inflammatory) are usually administered as pain medications. Especially, ibuprofen and aspirin prove helpful in lowering moderate pain. However, excessive use of these drugs can disturb the proper functioning of the stomach or liver.
When the pressure on nerves is causing neuropathy, surgery is the usual course of action adopted by the medical practitioners.
Doxepin, Amitriptyline, Nortriptyline (Pamelor), and a few other tricyclic antidepressants are administered to relieve the pain.
There are numerous procedures and therapies, which have proved to be helpful while minimizing the symptoms of peripheral neuropathy.
- Transcutaneous Electronic Nerve Stimulation (TENS)
This treatment isn’t for everyone, but most of the patients prefer it being a drug-free therapy. During this procedure, a small amount of electricity is sent into the skin to relieve the sensation of pain.
It is one of the medical treatments, which assists in controlling the symptoms of this disorder. This process involves the removal of antibodies that are causing the trouble. The medical practitioner may also inject an anesthetic into the nerves to deal with the never blockage.
- Physical therapy
When muscle weakness is the major cause of this disorder, physical therapy may assist the patients while improving their movements.
Some of the alternative treatments that exhibit promising results are as under:
Chiropractic Treatment: This type of treatment has been effective in relieving the pain and treating the major cause of neuropathy. It proves to yield highly impressive results when combined with other medications.
Acupuncture: It is a centuries-old method, where thin needles are inserted into various points on the body. Acupuncture offers relief in pain and other neuropathy symptoms. The procedure is safe and effective, especially when carried out by a certified practitioner.
Natural Herbs: Evening primrose oil and similar other herbs may reduce pain when diabetes is the cause of neuropathy. However, the patient should consult their doctor prior to using these herbs, as they have a tendency to interact with some medications.