Neuropathy Treatment Options
How is peripheral neuropathy diagnosed?
The symptoms of peripheral neuropathy are highly variable. A thorough neurological examination is required to sort out the cause of the symptoms along with a medical history and lifestyle review. Work environment, social habits, exposure to toxins, alcohol use, risk of infectious diseases, and a family history of neurological diseases could all be contributing factors. In addition, tests are usually performed to identify the cause of the neuropathy as well as the extent and type of nerve damage.
A physical examination and various tests may reveal the presence of a systemic disease causing the nerve damage. Tests of muscle strength, the ability to sense vibration, light touch, body position, temperature, and pain can reveal any sensory nerve damage and may indicate whether small or large sensory nerve fibers are affected.
Blood tests can detect diabetes, vitamin deficiencies, liver or kidney dysfunction, other metabolic disorders, and signs of abnormal immune system activity. More specialized tests may reveal other blood or cardiovascular diseases, connective tissue disorders.
Based on the results of the neurological exam, physical exam and patient history additional tests may be ordered to help determine the nature and extent of the neuropathy.