Neuropathy Care in Rochester NY

Peripheral Neuropathy Treatment

Your five senses work when the peripheral nervous system works.  It’s the transfer of information from the brain to the body that allows us to experience life more thoroughly. More specifically, it is critical to pay attention to subtle or obvious signs of problems with your body in order to get health issues properly diagnosed. In this article we will talk about the importance of the peripheral nervous system and what treatments are available for people with Neuropathy.

What is the peripheral
nervous system?

 Peripheral nerves are an integral part of the human nervous system. The nervous system consists of the central nervous system (brain and spinal cord) and the peripheral nervous system.  The job of the peripheral nervous system is to relay information between your brain and the rest of your body. The peripheral nervous system is divided into two main part the Autonomic nervous system (ANS) which controls involuntary bodily functions and regulates glands. And the Somatic nervous system (SNS) which controls muscle movement and relays information from ears, eyes and skin to the central nervous system (UCSD).  

What is the central nervous system?

The nervous system transmits signals between the brain and the rest of the body, including internal organs. In this way, the nervous system’s activity controls all 5 of the senses – the ability to move, breathe, see, think and touch (sensation). The basic unit of the nervous system is a nerve cell, or neuron. A neuron has a cell body, which includes the cell nucleus, and special extensions called axons and dendrites. Bundles of axons, called nerves, are found throughout the body (NICHD).

What is the peripheral nervous system function? When all of the elements of the peripheral nervous system work together, correctly, than information is transmitted and there will not be any weakness, numbness and/or pain. The specific functions of the peripheral nervous system covers three different areas.

  1. Conveying motor commands to all voluntary striated muscles in the body.
  2. Carrying sensory information about the external world and the body to the brain and spinal cord (except visual information: the optic nerves, which convey information from the retina to the brain, are in fact outgrowths from the brain).

 3. regulating autonomic functions such as blood pressure or sweating (Science Direct).

PRESCRIPTIONS PILLS

Mask problem
Side effects
Condition worsens
Doesn’t treat root cause
Decrease in effectiveness over time

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What Happens When The Peripheral Nervous System Is Not Functioning Correctly?

   Because the peripheral nervous system controls so much of our bodily functions the list of disfunctions is long.  Briefly, the most common disorders and subsequent diseases are, Parkinson’s disease.

   Multiple sclerosis (MS), Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), Alzheimer’s disease and Huntington’s disease. The most common symptoms are, a “pins and needle sensation”, weakness and numbness.  Some further symptoms of neuropathy are: 

Muscle twitching Loss of muscle and bone Changes in skin, hair, or nails Loss of balance or other functions as a side effect of the loss of feeling in the legs, arms, or other body parts Emotional disturbances Sleep disruptions Loss of pain or sensation that can put you at risk, such as not feeling an impending heart attack or limb pain Inability to sweat properly, leading to heat intolerance Loss of bladder control, leading to infection or incontinence Dizziness, lightheadedness, or fainting because of a loss of control over blood pressure Diarrhea, constipation, or incontinence related to nerve damage in the intestines or digestive tract Trouble eating or swallowing Life-threatening symptoms, such as trouble breathing or irregular heartbeat (Mayo Clinic)

What are the stages of neuropathy

In the early stages of peripheral neuropathy, patients typically present with progressive symptoms, including sensory loss, numbness, and pain or burning sensations in distal limbs in a “stocking and glove” distribution. Over time, the numbness may extend proximally, and mild distal muscle weakness and atrophy may occur. In disorders that cause acute peripheral neuropathy, such as those produced by toxic exposures, patients may present with similar but more fulminant symptoms, and pain predominates; symptoms also typically have a faster progression (AAFP)

Most instances of neuropathy are either acquired,(not genetic) Acquired neuropathies are either symptomatic (the result of another disorder or condition; see below) or idiopathic (meaning it has no known cause) (NINDS). There are many conditions or diseases that cause neuropathy (that should be discussed and diagnosed by a doctor):

Physical injury (trauma) – because the peripheral nervous system transmit signals throughout the body, when there is a physical injury to the nerves, one will experience neuropathy. A person could get physical injury to the nervous by playing sports, having an accident and/or falling. 

Diabetes is the leading cause of polyneuropathy in the United States. About 60 – 70 percent of people with diabetes have mild to severe forms of damage to sensory, motor, and autonomic nerves (NINDS). One of the most common causes of peripheral neuropathy in the U.S. is diabetes (URMC).

 

Vascular and blood issues – Having vascular problems can decrease oxygen supply to the peripheral nerves can lead to nerve tissue damage. Certain risk factors like smoking, obesity, alchoholism can further cause the thickening and scarring, impending blood flow and causing nerve damage. 

Autoimmune diseases, in which the immune system mistakenly attacks a number of the body’s own tissues, can directly target nerves or cause problems when surrounding tissues compress or entrap nerves.  Sjögren’s syndrome, lupus, and rheumatoid arthritis are some systemic autoimmune diseases that cause neuropathic pain.  

Autoimmune diseases – These diseases can attack nerves only are often triggered by recent infections. They can develop quickly or slowly, while others become chronic and fluctuate in severity. Damage to the motor fibers that go to the muscle includes visible weakness and muscle shrinking seen in Guillain-Barré syndrome and chronic inflammatory demyelinating polyneuropathy. 

Hormonal imbalances can disturb normal metabolic processes, leading to swollen tissues that can press on peripheral nerves. 

Kidney and liver disorders – Patients with chronic kidney disease (CKD) are frequently afflicted with neurological complications. These complications can potentially affect both the central and peripheral nervous systems. Common neurological complications in CKD include stroke, cognitive dysfunction, encephalopathy, peripheral and autonomic neuropathies (NCBI)

Nutritional or vitamin imbalances   – Symptoms of lack of vitamin B12 can cause serious anemia, nerve damage and degeneration of the spinal cord. It is common for anemia to develop first, but this is not always the case, especially if a person is taking a folate supplement. A lack of B12 damages the myelin sheath that surrounds and protect nerves. Without this protection, nerves cease to function properly and conditions such as peripheral neuropathy occur (Foundation for PN)

Certain cancers and benign tumors – Beyond the actual diseases like cancers and tumors, the treatments for cancers and tumors like chemotherapy and radiation can also cause Neuropathy. 

Can you stop the progression of neuropathy?

 Because neuropathy can be caused by specific conditions and risk factors it is important for a person to see a doctor, this will be the most effective way eliminate symptoms and treat neuropathy. 

Peripheral Neuropathy Treatments in Rochester, NY

Once a person gets diagnsed with Peripheral Neuropathy, it is critical they get treated properly as to relieve symptoms and further discomfort. There are many effective treatments:

 Prescription medications – There are many medications one could take but they also, might come with side effects, doesn’t treat root cause and can decrease in effectiveness over time. The most common medications are: pain relievers, antidepressants and anti-seizure medications.

Therapies – surgery, physical therapy and Transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation (TENS)

Eliminating risk factors – If at all possible it is recommended to maintain a healthy lifestyle cutting out drinking, smoking, over eating and increasing excercise.

Shockwave Therapy – Extracorporeal shock wave therapy (ESWT), a non-invasive treatment, relieves the pain of peripheral nerve damage and promotes local arterial remodeling and cellular regeneration. It is also known as an effective treatment for enhancing muscle strength and decreasing muscle tone (NCBI) Shockwaves are sound waves that have specific physical characteristics, including nonlinearity, high peak pressure followed by low tensile amplitude, short rise time, and short duration (10 ms). They have a single pulse, a wide frequency range (0-20 MHz), and a high pressure amplitude (0-120 MPa).  High energy SWT or “true” shockwaves are classified as short duration (approx. 10msec) high energy pulses (5-100MPa) that break the sound barrier resulting in a shockwave.Shockwave Therapy can be a proven effective treatment when a trained medical professinal like Dr.Miller performs the treatments (Physio-Pedia).  

Shockwave Information: The transmission of a shock wave or of a pressure wave leads to effects on the tissue. The transformation of the physical energy into a biological response is similar to a cascade process. First the cell skeletal annexes are activated, which leads to the release of mRNA from the cell nuclei. This is followed by activation of cell organs such as the mitochondria and the endoplasmic reticulum and the cell vesicles, which release the specific proteins of the healing process (Effort Open Reviews)

 

Shockwave Therapy Effectiveness – If a patient receives treatment from a trained medical professional, by using radial ESWT deliver 2000 impulses at 2.5 bars (energy flux density 0.12 mJ/mm2) at 8 Hz for three sessions at weekly intervals, Shockwave Therapy can be extremely effective. Unlike medications, surgeries and other therapies, Shockwave Therapy has little to no known side-effects and patients normally dont have to prepare previous to the treatments. Data shows it can stimulate blood flow and potentially help grow new blood vessels.

 

Shockwave Therapy Cost: Some insurance plans/companies might not cover the cost of treatments so patients can expect a cost of around, $400 and $500 per treatment.

Who can benefit from Shockwave Therapy in rochester NY?

Someone that has possibly been diagnosed with the above conditions, hasnt responded to medications and/or surgery isnt an option can benefit from Shockwave Therapy. Most people who get shockwave therapy for ED will often see benefits within one to three months. The initial results (within the first several weeks) can be dramatic.

Statistics: So many people suffer from some typf of PN each year.  Below are some important facts:

  • 30 MILLION AMERICANS suffer from some type of PN
  • 30-40% of all cancer patients have Chemotherapy-induced peripheral neuropathy (CIPN).
  • Around 23% of all neuropathy patients are diagnosed with idiopathic neuropathy.
  • Exposure to some toxic substances can make one susceptible to peripheral nerve damage. These substances include heavy metals, such as lead, mercury, arsenic and organic solvents; and certain medications, such as those used to treat cancer or AIDS.(Foundation for PN)

 

 

Research:

  • Ultrasound and shock-wave stimulation to promote axonal regeneration following nerve surgery: a systematic review and meta-analysis of preclinical studies (Nature, 2018)
  • Effectiveness and Safety of Shockwave Therapy in Tendinopathies (NCBI, 2018).
  • Effectiveness of Focused Shockwave Therapy versus Radial Shockwave Therapy for Noncalcific Rotator Cuff Tendinopathies: A Randomized Clinical Trial (Hindawi, 2021)
  • Effect of extracorporeal shockwave therapy on carpal tunnel syndrome (LWW Medicine, 2019)
  • 71 Treatment for Chronic-Burn Induced Neuropathy: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis (Oxford Academic, 2021)
  • Treatment of diabetic foot ulcers in a frail population with severe comorbidities using at-home photobiomodulation laser therapy: a double-blind, randomized, sham-controlled pilot clinical study (Springer, 2021)

 

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