Peripheral neuropathy is nerve damage within the peripheral nervous system, which communicates with the central nervous system (involving the brain and spinal cord). Diabetes often causes peripheral neuropathy, however, it can also occur due to genetics, infections, injuries, hormonal imbalances, or other medical conditions. Peripheral neuropathy may cause numbness, weakness, muscle twitching or cramps, changes in nails, skin and hair, and a pins-and-needles sensation in the legs and feet. It may also be difficult to maintain balance or feel changes in temperature or pain, and you may experience disturbances in your emotions and sleep patterns. If you have any of these symptoms, it is suggested that you contact a podiatrist. They can help diagnose peripheral neuropathy and manage its symptoms with oral medications, orthotic devices, regular checkups and advice on proper foot care.
Neuropathy can be a potentially serious condition, especially if it is left undiagnosed. If you have any concerns that you may be experiencing nerve loss in your feet, consult with Alex Yanovskiy, DPM from Illinois Foot & Ankle Clinic. Our doctor will assess your condition and provide you with quality foot and ankle treatment for neuropathy.
What Is Neuropathy?
Neuropathy is a condition that leads to damage to the nerves in the body. Peripheral neuropathy, or neuropathy that affects your peripheral nervous system, usually occurs in the feet. Neuropathy can be triggered by a number of different causes. Such causes include diabetes, infections, cancers, disorders, and toxic substances.
Symptoms of Neuropathy Include:
- Sensation loss
- Prickling and tingling sensations
- Throbbing, freezing, burning pains
- Muscle weakness
Those with diabetes are at serious risk due to being unable to feel an ulcer on their feet. Diabetics usually also suffer from poor blood circulation. This can lead to the wound not healing, infections occurring, and the limb may have to be amputated.
To treat neuropathy in the foot, podiatrists will first diagnose the cause of the neuropathy. Figuring out the underlying cause of the neuropathy will allow the podiatrist to prescribe the best treatment, whether it be caused by diabetes, toxic substance exposure, infection, etc. If the nerve has not died, then it’s possible that sensation may be able to return to the foot.
Pain medication may be issued for pain. Electrical nerve stimulation can be used to stimulate nerves. If the neuropathy is caused from pressure on the nerves, then surgery may be necessary.
If you have any questions, please feel free to contact our office located in Des Plaines , IL . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.