A neuropathy treatment may not be the same for every patient. Some doctors prefer one method to another and in some cases the underlying cause will affect which treatment is best for the individual. Regardless of the treatment chosen, proper diagnosis and prompt treatment of the neuropathy and the underlying cause is important as it can help to avoid permanent nerve damage. There are a few different treatment options to consider including medications, injection therapies, physical therapy, and in some cases even surgery. Of course, treating the case of the neuropathy is paramount so it does not continue.
Treating neuropathy with medication is not as simple as popping an aspirin or ibuprofen in your mouth, and the reason for this is that these medications are not effective in treating the pain. When you want to treat neuropathy you need to use medications that actually target the nerve cells, which your over the counter varieties do not do.
Cymbalta, which is also known as Duloxetine hydrochloride, is often used to treated neuropathy. In fact, this medication has been approved by the Food and Drug Administration to treat diabetic peripheral neuropathy, although it can be used to treat all types of neuropathy. The side effects associated with this medication include dry mouth, dizziness, hot flashes, nausea, and diarrhea. These symptoms will usually dissipate and the pain relief usually mitigates the side effects.
There are some anticonvulsants that have not been approved by the Food and Drug Administration to treat neuropathy but many doctors have found that they will provide a lot of relief for patients in pain. These drugs include Neurontin, Topamax, and Elavil. While they will provide some relief, they may also have common side effects such as fatigue, low blood pressure, dizziness, and drowsiness.
Other doctors have found that the anticonvulsants Tegretol, Lamictal, Xylocaine, and Mexitil are also very effective in treating neuropathy. Many times these anticonvulsants will cause low white blood cell levels, nausea, vomiting, and dizziness. The local treatments which are Xylocaine and Mexitil, are often associated with double vision, tiredness, feeling light headed, and nervousness.
Injection therapy is a neuropathy treatment that many patients and doctors opt for. This treatment involves injecting lidocaine or a similar medication into the area of the affected nerves. This helps because it prevents the nerve from carrying the impulses to the brain that will cause pain. This will provide temporary relief of the symptoms of neuropathy.
Physical therapy is often recommended for patients who suffer from neuropathy. With exercise, massage, and heat the pain is often controlled and can be helped with acupuncture. Vitamin supplements may be provided and discontinuing medications that can add to the problem may also be recommended.
Surgery is not always an option. Surgical neuropathy treatment is something that is considered a last resort and is usually for those that have neuropathy associated with arthritis or another condition where the actual structure of the body is causing the pain. This is why treating the underlying cause of the neuropathy is so important, because there is not a quick fix for the neuropathy itself and not everyone is a candidate for every type of treatment.
How well an individual responds to any one neuropathy treatment will depend on the underlying cause. Generally, the earlier the diagnosis is made and treatment begins, the better the chance that permanent nerve damage can be avoided, reversed, or minimized. Getting control of the underlying cause will further help to avoid permanent damage caused by neuropathy.
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