Diabetic peripheral neuropathy (DPN) is nerve damage that develops in people affected by diabetes. Between 60 and 70 percent of all diabetic patients are affected by DPN, having the ability to develop at any stage in their diabetes. Typically, DPN is irreversible, and clinicians can only offer treatment to mask painful symptoms. New research, however, demonstrates the ability of nerve decompression surgery used to improve sensation in individuals with DPN in the foot. Restoration of sensation can help prevent these patients from developing ulcers or even from having their foot amputated.
US Neuropathy Centers is affiliated with the top doctors dedicated to developing treatments and providing patients with results they need to live their lives free from the symptoms of PN. Our team is at the forefront of technology, assessing treatments that will relieve pain and give patients hope.
There are multiple factors that can cause diabetic neuropathies. Researchers believe nerve damage in diabetics is linked to excessive exposure to high blood glucose levels. In both DPN and other types of PN, other influences can include:
- Metabolic factors- ie high blood glucose and blood fat levels
- Neurovascular factors
- Autoimmune factors- ie nerve inflammation
- Mechanical injury to nerves- ie carpal tunnel syndrome
- Hereditary factors
- Lifestyle factors- physical activity, smoking, alcohol use
A 1978 study, published by Jakobsen, reviewed hyperglycemia’s effect on peripheral nerves on diabetic rats. Jakobsen discovered that the peripheral nerve becomes edematous (more likely to become constricted). In the United States, this process occurs in approximately 14 to 30 percent of the diabetic population. Based on this finding, physicians believe the constriction of the nerve could account for most DPN cases and their attributed symptoms.
While physicians and researchers hypothesize over what causes PN in patients, most believe that the only effective treatment is symptom control through the use of medications. However, a study by MacKinnon and Dellon in 1980, noted that most patients affected by carpal tunnel syndrome with symptoms of diabetic peripheral neuropathy had relieved pain and regained sensations after decompression surgery. Patients with lower extremity peripheral nerve decompression had a success rate of 88 percent after decompression surgery.
While the American Academy of Neurology (AAN) still finds the conclusions of decompression surgery’s efficacy for DPN to be “unproven,” most physicians agree that it can be “life-changing.” At US Neuropathy Centers, we consider all avenues of treatment so each patient has the best chances for success. Our physicians, and entire team, are dedicated to providing real results with tailored treatment plans for each individual patient. Stephen L. Barrett, DPM, MBA, FACFAS, author of “Decompression Surgery to Reduce Diabetic Neuropathy,” says, “In over 12 years of performing more than 500 of these surgeries in my private practice, there have been no hospital admissions for infection, and fewer than 10 patients who developed minor cellulitis.” Eighty-five percent of his patients have had excellent results. In his words “the best testimonial is when the patient comes back after having a decompression in one leg and insists on having the other leg done!”
If you are suffering from neuropathy, please do not hesitate to call us at US Neuropathy Centers.
The advice and information contained in this article is for educational purposes only, and is not intended to replace or counter a physician’s advice or judgment. Please always consult your physician before taking any advice learned here or in any other educational medical material.
@US Neuropathy Centers, 2018