various options in diabetic neuropathy treatment

Diabetics need to constantly ensure that their blood sugar levels remain within controllable limits since if they always remain on the higher side or if there are wild fluctuations then the chances of attracting unwanted complications such as diabetic neuropathy are quite high. In case diabetics do get afflicted with such complications, there are various options in diabetic neuropathy treatment that can be pursued.

Diabetics need to ensure that they maintain their blood sugar levels with the right balance of a healthy diet, adequate exercise and a regular routine of blood glucose monitoring and insulin delivery system. However, this is easier said than done and often there are sudden spikes in glucose levels after certain meals. Over time, this can damage a diabetic’s body and this problem manifests itself in the form of diabetic neuropathy that affects various organs such as the heart, lungs, kidneys, eyes, hands, fingers, feet and toes, among others. These organs are affected since diabetes causes poor blood circulation and damages nerves that result in these organs not being able to receive proper signals from the brain.

As oxygen-starved nerves start to waste away, they might cause cataracts or glaucoma in eyes, tingling, numbness or severe pain in hands or legs, irregular bowel or bladder movements or even sexual problems. These neuropathies are classified as Focal, Peripheral, Proximal and Autonomic neuropathy. Diabetics need to immediately rush to their doctor or hospital as soon as they notice any deterioration in any of these organs instead of waiting till the last stage, since if diabetic neuropathy is still in its nascent stage, then there are chances of a full recovery, depending on the organ which is affected. Patients will need to undergo electromyography or emg tests to confirm if they indeed have developed any of the neuropathies.

The diabetic’s doctor might suggest various treatment options depending on the organ that has been involved. For example, in case the eyes have been affected, then the patient might need to go in for laser surgery. In case of any sexual problems too, diabetics might need to undergo surgery or might need to take medications or even need a combination of both the treatments.

However, one common manifestation of diabetic neuropathy that is quite difficult to detect and treat is peripheral diabetic neuropathy, which affects hands, feet, fingers and toes. While in certain cases, surgery can alleviate the pain associated with compressed nerves, in most cases, a combination of anti-depressant and anti-convulsive medicines along with topical creams might be the only available treatment, which would anyway be able to only slow down the disease and provide relief from pain. In later stages, this neuropathy has no cure, although an antioxidant known as alpha lipoic acid has been known to reduce pain and help control blood sugar levels in humans and most diabetic pets except cats. Physical therapy or PT and Occupational Therapy or OT can also help diabetics in retaining control of their affected limbs.

Hence, diabetic neuropathy treatment depends on the organ or organs that have been affected and the stage at which the treatment is started. While the root cause is high blood sugar levels, other causes such as external nerve damage too can accelerate the symptoms of diabetic neuropathy and diabetics need to take great care in detecting and treating these complications.

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