Between 25-30% of Americans will experience nerve pain at some time during their life. Though common, without diagnosis and treatment, nerve pain increases the risk of serious health problems, including venous ulcers, gangrene, and amputation. At Yavapai Foot and Ankle Center, Todd Cox, DPM, and Blake Peterson, DPM, diagnose and treat nerve pain using safe, effective means. To schedule an appointment at the Prescott, Arizona, practice, call to speak with a member of the support staff or book online today.
The leading cause of nerve pain is peripheral neuropathy. Peripheral neuropathy is a potentially life-threatening condition that occurs due to permanent nerve damage. Common causes of neuropathy include diabetes, metabolic problems, exposure to toxins, and traumatic injuries.
Over time, peripheral neuropathy limits your ability to feel sensations, including changes in temperature or pain. If you cut yourself, or step on a foreign object, you might not realize it. These open wounds may become infected, resulting in tissue death and other complications.
Common symptoms of peripheral neuropathy include:
As nerve pain and damage gets worse, you might also experience changes in blood pressure, lightheadedness, or digestive problems.
Nerve pain affects people from all walks of life, but several factors may increase your risk. For example, you’re more likely to experience nerve pain if you have diabetes or drink excessive amounts of alcohol.
Other factors that increase your risk of nerve pain include thyroid and kidney disorders, a family history of neuropathy, and certain nutritional deficiencies.
To diagnose nerve pain, Yavapai Foot and Ankle Center performs a comprehensive review of your medical history and conducts a neurological exam. During the exam, they assess your tendon reflexes, muscle strength, and your ability to feel sensations.
If these tests don’t provide enough insight, your provider orders blood tests and nerve function tests like electromyography (EMG). EMG records the electrical activity of your muscles to detect nerve damage.
There’s no cure for neuropathy, but it’s possible to prevent additional nerve damage and limit pain. Depending on your needs, Yavapai Foot and Ankle Center might recommend:
You might also benefit from physical therapy, transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation (TENS), or plasma exchange. If your nerve pain occurs due to pressure from a tumor or bone spur, your provider might recommend surgery.
To receive all-inclusive care for nerve pain, request a consultation at Yavapai Foot and Ankle Center. Call the office to speak with a member of the support staff or book online today.