Neuropathy can be cared for by chiropractor Dr. Troy Dreiling. Our office is located in Vancouver, Washington and you can receive a complimentary consultation by calling the clinic.
Neuropathy (nerve pain) is a term that refers to a problem with your nerves. It generally refers to your peripheral nerves rather than your central nervous system. It can occur without cause, which doctors call “idiopathic”. Neuropathy is very common.
Approximately more than 20 million Americans suffer from it. It is most prevalent among older adults, although it can happen at any age. The cost to Medicare is over $3.5 billion each year.
Many nerves in your body can be affected by neuropathy. When the sensory nerves which control sensation are compromised, they cause tingling and numbness in your hands and feet. Affected motor nerves which allow movement cause patients to feel weakness in their feet and hands.
The autonomic nerves control body systems such as your bladder and gut. When those are affected, your heart rate and blood pressure change. Mononeuropathy is a term used to describe pain in a single nerve. Polyneuropathy is a term that refers to several affected nerves.
Neuropathy is very complex. There are many medical conditions that can contribute to it, including those that cannot be diagnosed. Here are just some of them:
- B12 and other vitamin deficiencies
- Drugs, including chemotherapy and HIV medication
- Toxins and insecticides
- Cancers such as lymphoma
- Excessive alcohol drinking
- Acute kidney disease
- Acute liver disease
- Broken bones and tight casts
- Infections such as shingles and Lyme Disease
- Guillain-Barré syndrome
- Connective tissue diseases, including lupus and rheumatoid arthritis
- Inflammatory conditions such as sarcoidosis and coeliac disease
- Hereditary diseases
Neuropathy Analysis And Treatment
Unfortunately, there is no proven method for curing neuropathy. The goal of every doctor is to treat the patient to lessen their nerve pain. A treatment plan is designed to effectively do so while balancing any negative side effects. An examination will be conducted to check your skin, pulses, reflexes, and sensations.
A few other tests may be done including:
- Nerve conduction testing – These will monitor the pace at which your nerves send out messages. Electrodes that emit tiny electrical impulses will be placed on your skin above the nerve being tested. The impulses will feel like small shocks. It is designed to stimulate your nerves and test the distance/speed that your impulses travel to other electrodes. Patients experiencing neuropathy will have a shorter speed calculation than those who do not.
- Nerve biopsy – A small section of your nerve is removed for testing.
- Skin biopsy – This technique is new. It can determine early onset of neuropathy. It is also used to check the progression of your nerve pain and how you are responding to treatment. It is especially helpful in measuring nerve density. Patients experiencing neuropathy will have reduced nerve density.
Generally, prescription medications are the first option for neuropathy treatment.
However, it can take some time to determine the most effective dosage. The three most common medications prescribed are antidepressants (Amitriptyline and Nortriptyline), anticonvulsants (Carbamazepine and Neurontin), and local anesthetics like lidocaine and mexiletine.
Some doctors find that a combination of antidepressants and anticonvulsants are most effective. In fact, a combination of antidepressants, anticonvulsants and local anesthetics has also been recommended.
Neuropathy And Chiropractic Treatment
Chiropractic treatment is an extraordinary method for treating neuropathy. Doctors of Chiropractic are trained to give patients relief from pain and other related complications. They will begin with an in-depth discussion to discover your medical history. You will be asked to describe your symptoms in detail and when you first started to experience them.
The doctor will also need to know which daily activities cause you less or more pain. The chiropractor will then conduct a physical exam. This may include checking your vitals like blood pressure, respiration, etc.
Your muscle tone and strength will be observed as well as your sensory factors and reflexes. He may ask you to stretch, lift your arms and legs, and other tasks to test your movement and coordination.
These assessments allow the doctor to form a chiropractic treatment plan for you. His education and experience has prepared him to apply a series of adjustment techniques.
These techniques allow him to treat areas of pain that will give some relief to patients. It may involve gentle pressure and quick thrusts.
However, chiropractors are professionally trained to conduct these precise movements. It is what sets them apart from general medical practitioners.
To determine the best chiropractic treatment plan for you, the doctor may perform diagnostic imaging procedure such as a CT scan or MRI. This eliminates the possibility that another severe medical condition is the cause of your nerve pain.
Are there other tips that can help me control my neuropathy?
Yes, if you want to control your neuropathy, you can try these methods:
- Creams and patches that contain the chili pepper extract capsaicin. It may take multiple applications and several weeks for the extract to be effective.
- Meditation, yoga, Pilates, or other stress-relief exercises
- Massage therapy
- Vitamin therapy
Will chiropractic treatment cure my neuropathy?
There is no known cure for neuropathy. However, continuous chiropractic treatment can control it and possibly eliminate it. Every patient is different. Your level of pain and frequency is unique from another patient. A treatment plan will be designed specifically to fit your needs.
Chiropractic treatment is a non-invasive method for helping patients that suffer from neuropathy. When your motor, sensory, and autonomic nerves are affected, you experience variable, debilitating pain.
As chiropractors, we can help you alleviate that horrible discomfort. We are experts at treating disorders related to the nervous system and musculoskeletal system.
Our goal is to create a treatment plan that targets your pain, movement limitations, and level of activity tolerance. With a combination of care methods such as exercise, manual adjustments, and modifications for activities and ergonomics—we can get you back on track. If you are suffering from neuropathy, find out how we can help you.
Set up a FREE consultation with us today. We are determined to upgrade the health and overall well-being of our patients. Call us today to set up an appointment that will change your life!