Neuropathy, also known as peripheral neuropathy, is a condition that results from damage to the peripheral nerves, which are responsible for transmitting signals between the central nervous system and the rest of the body. This condition can lead to pain, numbness, and weakness, typically in the hands and feet, but it can affect other areas of the body as well.
At Alliance Orthopedics, we understand the debilitating effects of neuropathy and are dedicated to providing comprehensive care to help patients manage their symptoms and improve their quality of life.
Causes of Neuropathy
Neuropathy can be caused by a variety of factors. It’s often associated with certain medical conditions, such as diabetes, which is one of the most common causes. Other potential causes include injuries, infections, and exposure to toxins. Certain medications, especially those used for chemotherapy, can also lead to neuropathy.
Several factors can increase an individual’s risk of developing neuropathy. These include:
- Having a family history of neuropathy or other neurological disorders
- Being over the age of 40
- Having diabetes, especially if it’s poorly controlled
- Lifestyle factors such as excessive alcohol consumption and smoking, which can damage peripheral nerves
Symptoms of Neuropathy
Neuropathy symptoms can range from mild to severe and usually develop gradually. Common symptoms often include:
- Numbness, tingling, or burning sensation, especially in the hands or feet
- Sharp, throbbing, or burning pain
- Extreme sensitivity to touch
- Muscle weakness or paralysis
- Problems with coordination and balance
At Alliance Orthopedics, diagnosing neuropathy involves a thorough evaluation. Our team starts by understanding your symptoms, the circumstances leading to the onset of symptoms, and your overall health history. This is followed by a physical examination, where our specialists assess your sensitivity to vibration, temperature, and touch.
To confirm the diagnosis and determine the cause of neuropathy, we may also recommend additional tests. These can include blood tests, nerve function tests, and imaging tests such as MRI or CT scans.
The treatment for neuropathy is designed to manage symptoms and address the underlying cause. Depending on the cause, treatment may include controlling blood sugar levels for diabetic patients, modifying lifestyle factors such as alcohol consumption and smoking, or changing medications if they are the cause of neuropathy.
Physical therapy can also be beneficial in symptom management by improving strength and mobility. In some cases, surgical intervention may be necessary.
At Alliance Orthopedics, our commitment is to provide world-class care for your neuropathy, helping you manage your symptoms and improve your quality of life.