Healthy Foot Blog/Peripheral Neuropathy/Why You Should Treat Peripheral Neuropathy

Why You Should Treat Peripheral Neuropathy

Friday, October 27, 2023

"Neuropathy is a thief. It steals your sensation, your strength, and your independence." - Unknown

A large majority (possibly as high as 95%) of patients with peripheral neuropathy come into the office to find treatment options.  The pain and associated limitations are often large enough that treatment is necessary.  Many have even spent months or years (and possibly thousands of dollars) trying to find treatments.  It is often the primary reason they are being seen in the office. 

That being said, a small percentage of patients want to just live with it because it isn't enough of a pain or problem (yet).  Often they may ask if we should treat it.

My Recommendation: "Peripheral Neuropathy should ALWAYS be treated.   Even if you don't yet have symptoms, significant discomfort or disability!"

This isn't just because I like to treat neuropathy (I do!), but because ultimately it is best for you.  Let me give you four main reasons I recommend treatment:

  • Once Diagnosed, It Is Already A Problem: Peripheral neuropathy is a big deal!  The truth is that neuropathy means nerves are already damaged.  This damage can cause symptoms or may not cause symptoms that you recognized (many of the autonomic neuropathy symptoms are not recognized). 
  • Peripheral Neuropathy Is Progressive: All types of peripheral neuropathy will get worse over time.  The longer you wait, the more severe the symptoms, especially when not treated.
  • Treatment Is Easier If Less Severe: As with all medical conditions, treatment is easier when the disease process (peripheral neuropathy) is not as severe.  Catching before you have significant symptoms makes it much easier to treat!
  • Once Neuropathy Treatment Is Begun, Nerve Damage Can Be Stopped: The truth is that nerve damage is already happening in every body, but in patients without peripheral neuropathy symptoms the body is doing a better job of repair.  The purpose of most (if not all) neuropathy treatments is to stop the nerve damage that is happening.  This will reduce many symptoms before they become problematic.  Don't wait till the damage is so sever that you have a wider range of problems.

As a doctor, I don't force my opinion on anyone.  But if you were to ask me if you should treat your peripheral neuropathy, I would say YES!

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