|Peripheral Nerves of the Foot|
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- Trauma from nerve compression or inflammation
- Certain medications, such as chemotherapy treatments for cancer
- Vitamin deficiencies
- Hereditary syndromes
- Exposure to toxins and heavy metals, such as lead, mercury, or pesticides
- Exposure to cold or radiation
- Prolonged treatment in the intensive care unit
- Numbness or reduced sensation
- Pain, often a burning or sharp, cutting sensation
- Sensitivity to touch
- Muscle twitches
- Muscle weakness
- Difficulty with walking
- Loss of coordination or balance
- Loss of reflexes and muscle control
- Muscle atrophy—loss of muscle bulk
- Foot deformities
- Injuries to the feet that go unnoticed and become infected
- Problems regulating blood pressure
- Erectile dysfunction
- Difficulty breathing
- Muscle strength
- Ability to feel vibration, temperature, and light touch
- Semmes-Weinstein monofilaments test—measures sensation in the feet using a fine flexible wire
- You may need to have tests of your bodily fluids and tissues. This can be done with:
- You may need to have your nerves and muscles tested. This can be done with:
- You may need to have pictures taken of your bodily structures. This can be done with:
- Your doctor may need to evaluate other family members for this condition.
Treatment for the Underlying Illness or Exposure
- Balance issues
- Muscle weakness
- IV immunoglobulins
- Plasmapheresis—done to exchange plasma in the blood
- Manage chronic medical conditions with the help of your doctor. If you have diabetes, make sure you have regular foot exams.
- Eat a healthy diet that is low in saturated fat and rich in whole grains, fruits, and vegetables.
- Limit your alcohol intake to a moderate level. This means two or fewer drinks per day for men and one or fewer for women.
- Avoid toxic chemicals.
American Chronic Pain Association http://www.theacpa.org
The Neuropathy Association http://www.neuropathy.org
Canadian Diabetes Association http://www.diabetes.ca
Health Canada http://www.hc-sc.gc.ca
Baron R, Binder A, et al. Neuropathic pain: diagnosis, pathophysiological mechanisms, and treatment. Lancet Neurol. 2010;9(8):807-819.
Diabetic neuropathies: the nerve damage of diabetes. National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases, National Institutes of Health website. Available at: http://diabetes.niddk.nih.gov/dm/pubs/neuropathies/index.aspx. Updated June 25, 2012. Accessed July 11, 2013.
Karlsson P, et al. Epidermal nerve fiber length density estimation using global spatial sampling in healthy subjects and neuropathy patients. J Neuropathol Exp Neurol. 2013 Mar;72(3):186-93.
Peripheral neuropathy. EBSCO DynaMed website. Available at: http://www.ebscohost.com/dynamed/what.php. Updated July 4, 2013. Accessed July 11, 2013.
12/20/2007 DynaMed's Systematic Literature Surveillance http://www.ebscohost.com/dynamed/what.php: 2007 safety alerts for drugs, biologics, medical devices, and dietary supplements: Carbamazepine (marketed as Carbatrol, Equetro, Tegretol and generics). Medwatch. US Food and Drug Administration website. Available at: http://www.fda.gov/medwatch/safety/2007/safety07.htm#carbamazepine.
10/5/2009 DynaMed's Systematic Literature Surveillance http://www.ebscohost.com/dynamed/what.php: Feng Y, Schlösser FJ, Sumpio BE. The Semmes Weinstein monofilament examination as a screening tool for diabetic peripheral neuropathy. J Vasc Surg. 2009;50:675-682,682.
- Reviewer: Rimas Lukas, MD; Brian Randall, MD
- Review Date: 07/2013 -
- Update Date: 05/11/2013 -