Neuropathy is an umbrella term typically used to describe an issue with the nerves. Typically, the affected nerves are those around the feet or ankles. Generally speaking, neuropathy often occurs along with some other medical condition. However, it may also exist without a clear cause. Both the widespread nature of neuropathy and the variety of medical conditions that can cause it make this a complicated condition. There are three types of nerves that can be affected: autonomic nerves, motor nerves, and sensory nerves. Because of the complicated nature of neuropathy, it takes a keen eye to diagnose the symptoms and find a treatment. In fact, that is why people turn to Premier Podiatry for help. With the help of our doctors, patients get the help they need to live a quality life.
Numerous conditions can lead to neuropathy, including:
- Diabetes – Diabetes is the single most common cause of chronic neuropathy. High blood sugar levels, in patients who do not control their diabetes, damage nerves.
- Drugs – Specific drugs, including those used in chemotherapy and the treatment of HIV, can often result in peripheral nerve damage.
- Infections – Infections such as shingles, HIV, or Lyme disease may result in peripheral nerve damage.
- Idiopathic origin – In rare cases, there are no specific causes for neuropathy; this type of condition is described as “idiopathic.”
Typically, symptoms of neuropathy include:
- Tingling or numbness
- Pins and needles/hypersensitivity
- Increased pain
- Loss of the ability to detect heat or cold changes
- Loss of coordination
- Skin, hair, or nail changes
- Foot or leg ulcers, infection, or gangrene
In treatment, most doctors aim to address the underlying cause of neuropathy. For toxic causes, this means immediately removing exposure to the suspected toxins. Alternatively, your doctor may offer medications to relieve pain or reduce burning and tingling, effectively treating specific symptoms. As a result, our patients see a huge improvement in their quality of life. As a result, they feel they are better able to spend time with their family and keep working.
For more on neuropathy, please contact Premier Podiatry today by calling (309) 807-0384. We would be happy to answer any questions or concerns you may currently have. Do not hesitate to reach out for an appointment!