Neuropathy, or nerve damage, can cause symptoms such as tingling, numbness, and pain in limbs such as the hands and feet. Neuropathy is classified depending on the number of nerves and the types of nerves affected by the damage. There is no cure for neuropathy, but our Texas podiatrists can recommend treatment options to help manage the symptoms and keep the condition under control.
Types of Neuropathy
It’s estimated that over 20 million Americans have some type of peripheral neuropathy. The number may be higher because neuropathy symptoms are complex, and this medical condition is sometimes misdiagnosed. There are generally two types of neuropathy: mononeuropathy and polyneuropathy.
Neuropathy that affects only one nerve or nerve group is called mononeuropathy. It can be the result of an injury or trauma or due to factors such as:
- Persistent pressure or compression on a nerve
- Chronic inflammation
- Repetitive movements
A typical result of mononeuropathy is carpal tunnel syndrome. Symptoms of mononeuropathy are commonly localized to one area and may include:
- Radiating pain
- Numbness and tingling
Neuropathy that affects multiple nerves or nerve types is called polyneuropathy. Polyneuropathy is typically due to an underlying health condition, and the most common form is diabetic neuropathy that affects the feet. Symptoms of the condition can vary in severity and duration. Damage to the nerves can affect either the motor nerves which control movement and reflexes, or the sensory nerves, which can cause problems with balance or sensation.
Some symptoms of polyneuropathy are:
- Tingling or numbness in the feet and legs
- Burning pain that does not go away
- Loss of sensation
- Chronic foot ulcers
Neuropathy Treatment Options
If you have signs of neuropathy, see a doctor as soon as possible for a diagnosis and treatment options. For mononeuropathy, treatment will depend on which nerves are affected and may include removing pressure off the nerves, treating underlying medical conditions, and injections of corticosteroid medication. For cases where conservative options do not provide relief, decompression surgery may be needed to relieve pressure on the nerve.
A podiatrist can treat polyneuropathy in various ways depending on the underlying cause and the location and severity of symptoms. Treatments may include pain medication such as nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medications, lifestyle changes, and physical therapy.
Our Texas Podiatrists Can Help With Neuropathy
If you have signs of neuropathy and are looking for treatment options, contact Alliance Foot & Ankle Specialists for a consultation today. We can answer your questions and create a custom treatment plan based on your specific needs. Contact our Grapevine or Keller office to request an appointment by filling out our convenient online contact form or calling our office at 817-481-4000.