Peripheral Neuropathy Treatments
By Philadelphia The Foot & Ankle Group
December 23, 2014
Category: Foot Health
Find out how to best treat your neuropathy symptoms in Philadelphia.
If you’ve been diagnosed with peripheral neuropathy then you are probably doing your research to find out more about your Foot doctorcondition and what neuropathy treatment options are available to you in Philadelphia. Your Philadelphia podiatrist is here to provide Foot Doctormore information on your condition and how to best treatment your symptoms.
What is peripheral neuropathy?
This nerve disorder affects the peripheral nervous system, which transmit messages from your brain and spine to the rest of your body. You may experience pain, tingling and numbness in areas of the body, particularly the feet and hands. Peripheral neuropathy can affect the sensory nerves (responsible for sensation of temperature, pressure and pain) the motor nerves (which control muscles activity), or both.
What causes this condition?
There are several causes of peripheral neuropathy including diabetes, certain medications, chemotherapy, alcohol abuse, injury, exposure to chemicals, or even vitamin deficiencies. Sometimes the cause may even be unknown; however, many of the conditions that cause peripheral neuropathy can be treated or even prevented.
What peripheral neuropathy treatments are available to me?
Treatment will vary greatly depending on the cause of your peripheral neuropathy. If your neuropathy is caused by a vitamin deficiency, this can easily be treated. Diabetes is one of the main causes of neuropathy, and this metabolic disorder can also be controlled with the proper medication.
There are also treatments to help control neuropathy-specific symptoms:
  • Over-the-counter medications: We recommend OTC medications like vitamins or topical medications such as Capsaicin and Lidocaine. 
  • Prescription medications: Antidepressants and antiseizure medications are often prescribed to reduce neuropathy pain.  Prescription vitamins can also be very effective. 
  • Orthotics: Braces and orthopedic shoes can help with movement and reduce injury, particularly in those with a loss of sensation in the feet.
  • Exercise: To improve muscle strength and prevent weakness, we recommend including exercise into your daily routine. What exercises you perform will depend upon your abilities; however, we recommend low-impact aerobic exercises like swimming, which take pressure and weight off your feet. 
  • Electrical Stimulation treatment:  Combination injection and electrical stimulation treatment can be effective in many patients with peripheral neuropathy. 
Is there surgery that can relieve my neuropathy pain? 
In many cases, entrapment of nerves plays a large role in the symptoms of neuropathy.  In the hand, diabetics see a much larger incidence of carpal tunnel syndrome (nerve entrapment at the wrist) than the general population.  Recent research shows a high incidence of nerve entrapment in the foot, ankle and leg of those with neuropathy.  In those patients with diagnosed with coexisting neuropathy and entrapment, surgery can successfully reduce symptoms. 
If neuropathy is to blame for your severe foot problems, call your Philadelphia podiatrist today for help.