What are Common Symptoms of Neuropathy?

What are Common Symptoms of Neuropathy?

Neuropathy, also called peripheral neuropathy, involves damage to the peripheral nerves, the nerves outside the brain and spinal cord. It’s not actually one health condition, but rather a range of health problems and the symptoms of those problems. Neuropathy can be prevented or managed with lifestyle changes, dietary adjustments, and treatment, but ultimately, it’s irreversible. Are you at risk for this ailment? And what are common symptoms of neuropathy?  

Symptoms of Neuropathy

Neuropathy symptoms include weakness, numbness, and pain, typically in the hands and feet. Sometimes, nerve damage symptoms also include problems with digestion, urination, and circulation. If you have peripheral neuropathy, you might experience temporary or permanent numbness, increased sensitivity to touch, pain or a tingling, prickling, or burning sensation. Other signs of neuropathy include muscle weakness or wasting, paralysis, dysfunction in organs or glands, and impairment of urinary and sexual function. You might experience pain during activities that don’t warrant a pain response, like putting weight on your feet or putting them under a blanket. Some people with neuropathy develop a lack of coordination and muscle weakness, and may fall frequently.

In some cases, peripheral neuropathy affects autonomic nerves, the nerves that control involuntary or semi-voluntary functions like breathing, blinking, heartrate, blood pressure, digestion, and sweating. When this happens, the patient may develop heat intolerance, sweat excessively or be unable to sweat, or experience bowel or bladder problems. Neuropathy can also cause blood pressure to drop, causing dizziness or lightheadedness.

What causes neuropathy? Sometimes no cause can be determined, and the neuropathy is called idiopathic. However, in many cases there’s an identifiable reason for the neuropathy. Causes include:

  • Autoimmune diseases, including illnesses like Sjogren’s syndrome, Guillain-Barre syndrome, lupus, and rheumatoid arthritis, among others.
  • Diabetes, which is the most common cause. Over half of all people with diabetes develop some kind of neuropathy.
  • Infections, both viral and bacterial, including Lyme disease, shingles, Epstein-Barr virus, hepatitis B and C, HIV, leprosy, and diphtheria.
  • Inherited disorders like Charcot-Marie-Tooth disease.
  • Tumors, both malignant and benign, can develop on or press on nerves.
  • Bone marrow disorders including bone cancer, lymphoma, amyloidosis, and an abnormal protein in the blood called monoclonal gammopathies.
  • Other diseases like liver or kidney disease, connective tissue disorders, and hypothyroidism.
  • Alcoholism, particularly because of the poor dietary choices that go along with it.
  • Injuries that put pressure on the nerve.
  • Exposure to toxic substances.
  • Certain medications, particularly chemotherapy.
  • Vitamin deficiencies, including a lack of B-1, B-6, B-12, vitamin E, and niacin.

If you’re looking for neuropathy treatment, trust Oregon Medical Centers to help. Founded in 1989 as First Choice Chiropractic, Oregon Medical Centers was established in 2018 after adding Medical Providers and becoming an integrated medical facility. Specialists in treating car accident and workplace injuries, we also treat conditions like sciatica, pinched nerves, TMJ, neck and back pain, headaches, joint pain, and much more. We offer chiropractic care, physical therapy, massage, and regenerative medicine, and we specialize in diagnosing and treating chronic pain. Our dedicated medical team provides high-level care and compassion for patients in a collaborative environment where patients get the best possible treatment. What’s more, our insurance department assists in the insurance process, to alleviate stress for patients and allow them to focus on getting better. For more information, to find a location, or to schedule an appointment, call (503) 390-1552 in Salem, (503) 642-2845 in Aloha, or contact us through our website. 

May 02, 2023