Diabetic Mononeuropathy diagnosis and treatment

What is diabetic Mononeuropathy?

Diabetes is one of the leading causes of death around the globe. This disease tends to run in families and it’s so dangerous that it is one of the leading causes of many of the severe and acute disorders. One of those disorders is mononeuropathy. This term is often confused with neuropathy, although these two conditions are close enough they are not the same. The difference is quite subtle. In neuropathy, multiple nerves are damaged while in mononeuropathy only a single group of nerves gets damaged such as the olfactory nerves, sensory nerves etc.

As this condition negatively affects the group of nerves in any part of the body, targets them and damages them, the body part becomes unable to move or the result is simply the loss of any of the sensations. There are various types of the mononeuropathy that differ in symptoms, severity, and rarity. The most common type is carpal tunnel syndrome. It is the result of pressure on median nerve of the arm which causes muscle damage, numbness and weakness of the muscles of arms and hands. There are a few forms of cranial mononeuropathy as well that damage the nerves going out of the skull. Cranial mononeuropathy 4 can render double vision and difficulty moving your eyes.

We will not look into the causes or etiology of a common mononeuropathy because that is beyond the scope of this article. The purpose here is to highlight the complications caused by mononeuropathy caused as a result of diabetes.

Signs and symptoms to look for

The symptoms of this condition are specific to the area that it affects but the most common ones include:

  • Loss of sensation, as not being able to see, feel, hear, taste, or smell depending on the sensory area that got affected

  • The burning and tingling sensations in the body

  • Feeling numb or lack of feeling in any body part

  • Not being able to balance or coordinate your body

  • Losing your reflexes

  • Spasms, twitches, cramps, and convulsions of the muscles

  • General weakness

  • Excruciating pain

  • Muscle waste or muscle atrophy

  • Paralysis characterized by difficulty in moving your body.

How to diagnose Diabetic Mononeuropathy?

If you experience even mild symptoms of this disease and believe that you may be having it then get checked by your doctor as soon as possible. Provide complete medical history such as genetic disease running in family if any first-degree relative has any disease especially diabetes, age, gender, the first time you experienced these symptoms, If you ever had any other disease in your life, if you ever got operated and whether you had to go through a surgery. Also, inform them about any medications you may be taking or even any multivitamin supplements. It’s a better idea to inform your medical care practitioner of any herbs you may be taking on the regular basis because certain herbs such as devil’s weed, cohosh, and other varieties may react to the certain medications given.

After taking the history, your doctor may perform a thorough medical checkup. The tests help determine the exact cause of your condition. These tests may include magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), X-ray, C-reactive protein, sedimentation rate, rheumatoid factor, antinuclear antibody panel, computed tomography (CT) scan, thyroid tests, and blood tests.

How to treat Diabetic Mononeuropathy?

Treatment of diabetic mononeuropathy may be suggested by looking at the severity of nerve damage, if the nerve damage is not severe enough and it is mild then it may get better on its own.

Treating the underlying cause: In this case, standard preventive measures for controlling diabetes will be taken as well as treating the area of nerve damage. Your doctor may recommend controlling blood sugar levels and cut down the intake of sugar.

Corticosteroids: These are used to relieve pressure and swelling that is caused by mononeuropathy. Pain relievers can also be used to provide relief from the symptoms of pain. A medicine named Nerve Renew has been shown to be particularly effective in treating the diabetic mononeuropathy.

Physical therapy: It can be used to maintain the strength of the affected area of the muscle in the body. You may be asked to wear orthopedic appliances such as splints, braces and special shoes.

Occupational therapy and well-being: Along with any mode of treatment being applied emotional, mental and occupational therapy is necessary to enhance the general well-being and reduce the negative impact of the disease in the day to day life. The victims of this disease need support and awareness about healthy ways to cope with this disease. The coping strategies will be effective in managing social, occupational and emotional lives of these individuals. Additionally, biofeedback and acupuncture will be the right type of complementary treatments for this debilitating disease.

What to look for?

Nerve pain can sometimes last for long period of time. If left untreated it can cause permanent nerve damage which can lead to the loss of sensation. When the feeling of touch or pain is lost a person is unable to feel anything and this may lead to the development of more serious injury because of being left untreated for a long time.

You can take care of yourself very well if you visit your health care practitioner often and get educated about early signs and warning symptoms of the disorder. This may make your outlook to be positive and long-term regarding your health.

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