Neuropathy is a chronic disorder that affects close to twenty million men and women in the United States alone. This condition is a serious one and those who have symptoms of neuropathy need to be made aware of the complications that could arise from their lack of neuropathy treatment. Neuropathy can be classified in the following three ways:
- Multiple Mononeuropathy
Mononeuropathy is a form of neuropathy that affects a single nerve or nerve group. The damaged area begins to loss feeling and mobility. This type of neuropathy is often a result of personal injury, however there are systemic disorders that could cause damage to a single nerve or group of nerve cells. Examples of mononeuropathy would include:
- Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
- Ulnar Nerve Palsy
- Peroneal Nerve Palsy
- Axillary Nerve Dysfunction
- Radial Nerve Dysfunction
- Sciatic Nerve Dysfunction
Mononeuropathy can develop if there has been pro-longed period of swelling or pressure placed on a specific point in the body such as the hands, feet or face. Symptoms of mononeuropathy would include:
- Loss Of Feeling
- Muscle Weakness
Several tests can be done in hopes of determining or diagnosing this particular classification of neuropathy. You will find a list of tests below that a doctor might suggest or prescribe in hopes of discovering whether or not the symptoms being felt have to do with mononeuropathy.
- Electromyogram (EMG) – This test records electrical activity if any found in the muscles.
- Nerve Conduction Tests (NCV) – will help record the speed of electrical activity in the nerves
- Nerve Biopsy
- Blood Chemistry Tests
- Imaging Scans
- CT Scan
- Thyroid Tests
Mononeuropathy treatment options will be discussed in another chapter so keep reading!
Multiple Mononeuropathy occurs when two or more nerves at the same time in separate locations on the body begin to malfunction and send off painful sensations. Multiple mononeuropathy can be a result of several different conditions or illnesses such as:
- Polyarthritis Nodosa
- Rheumatoid Arthritis
- Lyme Disease
This form or classification of neuropathy is often caused by an infection or some sort of bacteria that has entered into the body and has begun to affect nerves. Symptoms of multiple mononeuropathy would include:
- Nerve Pain
- Muscle Weakness
- Odd Sensations
Symptoms are often felt or begin on one side of the body where the damaged nerve cells are. Medical professionals do their best to diagnosis through physical examination or by compiling a list of symptoms. Other tests that could diagnosis multiple mononeuropathy would include electromyography and or a nerve conduction test.
Treatment for multiple mononeuropathy will be discussed shortly.
Polyneuropathy is when several nerves begin to malfunction at the same time throughout the body. Polyneuropathy can happen quickly and without any warning or preemptive signs or could happen gradually alerting the neuropathy sufferer that something is not quite right. Polyneuropathies patients often experience neuropathy in a pattern that generally begins in the feet and makes its way up toward the thighs and then hands.
Diagnosis is often made through a complete physical or through laboratory testing. The symptoms often associated with polyneuropathy would include:
- Needle Like Pinching
- Raw Skin Feeling
- Sensitivity To Touch
The causes of polyneuropathy are vast but the most common causes of polyneuropathy would have to be:
- Alcohol Abuse
- Environmental Hazards
Treatment options for polyneuropathy will be discussed off and on throughout the bo
What Goes Into Diagnosing Neuropathy?
Diagnosing neuropathy can be tricky and is a rather lengthy process so if there is reason for concern it is imperative that you seek out medical attention quickly to begin the diagnosing process. The first step a physician will take in diagnosing neuropathy will be to administer a full body physiological exam. Your doctor will want to compile your medical history compare it with your physical results before going further with testing.
If there is a need for further testing, one can assume the following tests will be administered:
- Detailed neurological exam that focuses on tendon reflexes and coordination. The test results will either prove or disprove if the nerves are responding correctly.
- An Electromyography (EMG) – this records muscle tissue and its electrical activity. An EMG test can determine if the symptoms you are expressing concern over are truly neuropathic related or a muscle disease.
- Nerve Conduction Test (NCV) – this tests the speed of which impulses travel through the nerves.
Once a diagnosis has been made, follow-up care will be needed in order to discuss neuropathy treatment and how to cope with life after diagnosis.
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