Peripheral Neuropathy Can Affect Your Feet, Says Our Alexandria, VA, Podiatrist
Your peripheral nerves go from your brain and spinal cord out to your arms, hands, legs, and feet. Damaged nerves don't receive the appropriate signals from the brain they need to function properly. According to our Alexandria, VA, podiatrist, people with peripheral neuropathy have decreased sensation in their feet, and they often describe associated burning, numbness, tingling, and shooting pain. As the nerve damage and the foot's lack of sensation progresses, patients can experience related foot problems, such as the onset of infections due to untreated sores and cuts.
What Causes Peripheral Neuropathy?
According to our Alexandria, VA, podiatrist, there are many causes for peripheral neuropathy to develop in the feet, including:
- Neurological disorders
- Advanced age
- Hereditary reasons
- Certain Medications
Diabetes Is the Most Common Cause of Peripheral Neuropathy
Our expert podiatrist in Alexandria, VA, says that as many as 60-70% of patients with diabetes will develop peripheral neuropathy, due to the fact that consistently high blood sugar damages nerves throughout the body. While not everyone experiences the same pain areas or severity, symptoms of peripheral neuropathy usually begin in your toes, slowly spreading up your feet and legs as more nerves are affected.
Our Alexandria, VA, Podiatrist Explains How to Recognize & Treat Peripheral Neuropathy
How Do You Diagnose Peripheral Neuropathy?
Our knowledgeable podiatrist in Alexandria makes a diagnosis based on health history, symptoms, and a physical exam of your feet and legs. This in-office evaluation may include a baseline assessment of your reflexes and your ability to feel light touch or vibrations.
How Can You Treat Peripheral Neuropathy?
Unfortunately, there is currently no cure for peripheral neuropathy. The goals of treatment are to slow the progression of the disease, maintain proper foot health, and manage pain or discomfort. Our Alexandria podiatrist works with each patient to prevent or manage the conditions associated with peripheral neuropathy by promoting such measures as:
- Regular foot inspections to note any injuries or infections that require medical attention
- Working with other healthcare providers to contain damage to nerves by controlling blood sugar in diabetics
- Encouraging patients to wearing properly fitted shoes to prevent injury
- Educating patients how to care for their feet at home
- Prescribing physical therapy to help reduce balance problems if necessary
Do You Have More Questions About Peripheral Neuropathy?
Our Alexandria, VA, podiatrist is specially trained to preserve the health of your feet. We are here to answer any questions or concerns you have about peripheral neuropathy or any other foot and ankle conditions. Make The Podiatry Center part of your foot care team today!
The information provided in this article is not meant to be medical advice and is for educational purposes only. If you would like to learn more about this and other topics related to podiatry, feel free to contact The Podiatry Center, with a convenient podiatry office near Alexandria, VA, by clicking here or by calling 301.656.6055.