Is there a category of medical professional called “neuropathy specialist?”
This question is becoming more common as people ask about the tingling, numbness and pain in their feet, hands, legs and arms. Neuropathy is a term used to describe a range of nerve problems. Medical research identifies three types of nerves; sensory, motor and autonomic. Neuropathy is a pattern of various medical conditions and with many individuals the condition affects a single nerve or a single set of nerves.
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For example, Bell’s Palsy is one specific type of neuropathy affecting skin and muscles of the face. Individuals may also suffer nerve pain, nerve damage, tingling and numbness because of injury or infection. In addition, some people develop this condition because of exposure to toxic chemicals or other toxins, or as side effects or after-effects of drugs (prescription and non-prescription).
Diabetes: Most Common Cause
The most common cause of peripheral neuropathy is diabetes. About half of the people who have diabetes are without obvious symptoms, so doctors have made neuropathy testing a standard part of diabetes treatment and care. If nerve damage occurs, it generally cannot be treated or cured, so the best way to deal with neuropathy is to focus on the cause.
Exposure to toxins must be removed immediately. If the damage is not extensive, it’s possible to experience relief and improvement of the condition. If a drug is the underlying cause, stopping its use can have some significant effect. If you’d like to know more about a proven, self-help solution developed by a doctor who was a neuropathy sufferer, visit the website at The Neuropathy Solution.
Enter the Medical Professional
Most people will schedule an appointment with their local, family physician when they first experience the tingling, numb feeling or pain of neuropathy, as well they should. While this professional may be able to find a cause and prescribe effective treatment, you may also be referred to a specialist.
It’s at this point that many people come into contact with a neuropathy specialist. Doctors may use such procedures as nerve-conduction testing, skin biopsies for diagnosis, nerve and muscle biopsies, autonomic testing, sensory testing and ultrasound on nerves and muscles. If you proceed to this point you will usually be in the care of specialists in the field of neuromuscular medicine. The category may be diabetic peripheral neuropathy, inflammatory neuropathy or another sub-specialty.
The process of diagnosis, that can lead to treatment and improvement, will begin with gathering medical history, details of symptoms, and examination for signs of impaired reflexes, numbness and muscle weakness. Testing may also include blood and urine tests, from which the medical professional may be able to determine if there are vitamin deficiencies and other problems with your metabolism.
A Closer Look
It may also be possible to determine if there is another disease or an indication of hereditary problems causing problems with nerve function. A neuropathy specialist may also conduct an electromyography (EMG) test to learn more about muscle function and nerve function. This test can show abnormalities in nerve function and may even show damage details.
The diagnostic process may also include detailed review of medical records from family members, especially if they have been diagnosed with peripheral neuropathy. If they haven’t been diagnosed with this nerve condition, but report similar pain, tingling or numbness, it’s important for the doctor to have this information. This can be crucial to determining if there is a hereditary cause for your condition.
Can Treatment Begin?
The diagnosis process can be complex and time-consuming. But eventually you will need to get to the treatment stage. You can certainly do your own research and study of this malady, since there’s a lot of information available. Learn about a proven, self-help solution, developed by a doctor who was a neuropathy sufferer, when you visit the website at The Neuropathy Solution.
It isn’t absolutely necessary to seek help from a doctor or specialist, but you should not stop the process until you know the true cause of your neuropathy. That’s the only way treatment can effective. For example, diabetic neuropathy must be dealt with in an entirely different manner compared to nerve pain or damage caused by alcohol abuse, chemical toxins or injury.
In each and every case, you must begin diagnosis and treatment as early as possible, before the peripheral nerves have limited ability to regenerate. In many cases, proper treatment may stop the damage process but doesn’t always reverse damage.