Neuropathic pain symptoms & treatment
For most people, pain is an automatic reflex that protects them from damaging stimulus like a hot stove or candle. For example, heat exposure activates pain receptors in the skin, which pass a signal along a sensory neuron to the spinal cord. This activates a motor neuron, which sends a signal to the muscles in the arm, causing it to contract. But nerve damage can send false signals that cause real pain, or prevent individuals from feeling pain when they are injured.
Left untreated, nerve damage may worsen over time. Pain usually starts in the nerves farthest from the brain and spinal cord – like those in the feet and hands – and then moves up into the legs and arms.
One of the first symptoms of nerve damage is loss of sensation or numbness in the fingertips, which makes it harder for patients to do activities that involve the hands, such as knitting, typing, or tying shoes. Patients with nerve damage often report a dulled sense of touch.
Nerve pain is often worse at night, causing difficulty sleeping. Patients may be hypersensitive, reporting discomfort from the touch of sheets or the pressure of lying down.
Treatment of Balance Impairment in Multiple Sclerosis
Patients with nerve damage often experience muscle weakness that may make it harder to maintain balance. Physical therapy and assistive devices, such as braces, canes and walkers, can be helpful for preventing falls.
Although some people develop nerve pain for no identifiable reason, identifying and treating underlying conditions such as diabetes, shingles, and cancer may help relieve pain and halt the progression of nerve damage.
NSAIDs Can Increase Risk of Venous Thromboembolism
Medications for nerve pain relief include OTC painkillers such as nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), analgesics, creams, ointments and gel, and prescription opioids.
Patients that Suffer from Migraines Can Benefit from Meditation
Complementary and alternative approaches to alleviating nerve pain include acupuncture, biofeedback, hypnosis, and meditation.
Nerve damage affects approximately 20 million Americans. There are more than 100 different types of nerve damage with a range of different causes, including cancer and drug side effects and toxicities. Other causes are compression, trauma, autoimmune diseases, diabetes, motor neuron diseases, nutritional deficiencies, and infections. Learn more about the symptoms of and treatments for neuropathic pain with this slideshow.
- Existing Drug May Limit Recurrence and Metastasis of Glioblastoma Multiforme
- Blood Test Indicates Breast Cancer Tumors Developed Resistance to Hormone Treatment
- Breakthrough Advance Announced in International Blood Cancer Drug Trial
- Yoga Provides Mental, Emotional, and Physical Benefits for Patients With Cancer
- Citywide Program Increases Rates, Eliminates Racial Disparities in Colorectal Cancer Screening
- Breastfeeding Associated With A Reduced Risk of Aggressive Breast Cancer
- Hospitals Should Enact Bereavement Programs, Researchers Urge
- Physical Activity Communications Should be Part of Oncology Care Clinic Visits With Patients
- Communication Practices of Many US Physicians May Be Discouraging HPV Vaccination
- Chemo, Tamoxifen May Increase VTE Risk Among Patients With Breast Cancer
- New Blood Test Improves Screening for Prostate Cancer
- Concurrent Chemoradiotherapy Using Paclitaxel Plus Cisplatin in the Treatment of Elderly Patients With Esophageal Cancer
- International Study Charts Genetic Trajectory for Melanoma
- Risk of Several Autoimmune Diseases Increased in Childhood Cancer Survivors
- Protein Biomarker Assays for Diagnosing Thyroid Cancer May Show Inaccurate Readings
Sign Up for Free e-newsletters
Regimen and Drug Listings
GET FULL LISTINGS OF TREATMENT Regimens and Drug INFORMATION
|Head and Neck Cancer||Regimens||Drugs|