Beyond Conventional Neuropathy Treatment

Ask yourself if “conventional” neuropathy treatment alone is making you better?

First (you probably already know this), medicines alone have been the primary or conventional neuropathy treatment. There are a lot of medications used to treat neuropathy and nerve pain. Treatments are essentially the same no matter the cause. Most current drug treatments are directed at altering nerve, brain, and pain receptors.

Do you still wonder, “Okay, so again, am I going to feel better?” Great question!

Can Conventional Neuropathy Treatment Cure Me?

Unfortunately, there is no known “cure” for many forms of neuropathy and nerve pain. However, there is much more beyond a medication only approach.

The biggest problem is, not enough patients and doctors are aware of new and often effective available treatments. This is one area our research is beginning to change.

Here’s a post about a holistic approach and moving beyond conventional neuropathy treatment, if you’d like to know more.

To provide the best care for our neuropathy and nerve pain patients, we usually have to embrace other options. Here are a few reasons why it’s so important to use the multiple modality approach.

  • Better pain relief
  • Less medications are often needed
  • Less side effects
  • Improved quality of life

These four reasons alone are enough, but there are others.

Here at NeuropathyDR that is part of our mission. We inform patients and doctors of evolving treatment options. Knowledgeable experts more and more use a variety of treatments to help neuropathy and nerve pain patients feel better, and lead a better life.

The key takeaway we’d like to share is, the choice is yours.

What can you do? Inform yourself, do your research, and know your options.

Come back here often and read our latest updates. We’re happy to help in any way we can. You can join us over on Facebook for updates and daily diet, lifestyle and treatment advances too!

Click here to join us or for personalized care call our 24/7 Message Line at 339-793-8591

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What About Laser Treatments?

Laser has been around since about 1960 or so when a now famous scientist produced these “focused light beams” in the laboratory. Laser treatments in some forms have actually been used in medicine for many years.

Now, lasers are everywhere, everything from CD Players, printers and measuring devices to military weapons. I’m sure you may even have seen a few of your own! These ultra focused light beams can be used at high intensity to seal tissue, aid surgeons dentists and dermatologists in their daily work with patients. And at lower intensity, they have had applications in pain and neuropathy treatment for some time too.

So what does laser have to do with neuropathy and pain treatment? Well, it could be that laser treatments are the “missing link” in some forms of neuropathy and pain treatment! One of our basic attempts in neuropathy and pain treatment is to do whatever can help safely and effectively boost our cells use of “energy”. Well, along with proper nutrition and electrotherapy, laser may aid energy production in damaged nerves. The way this may happen is fascinating, but way beyond the scope of this column.

No treatment works 100 percent of the time. And that is a key point to remember. Nowhere is this more apparent than in laser treatments for neuropathy. Even amongst laser treatment experts there’s often disagreement as to what makes good neuropathy and pain treatment. But some techniques and equipment are proving very effective while others are a complete waste! And this is exactly why we now have so many types of laser treatments available.

This even includes an home laser treatments you can actually sleep with to improve your laser treatment results for pain and perhaps wound healing as well.

The good news is more experience and research including our own is helping us find even better laser treatments than we have available today!

Always remember though, our team members go to great lengths every day to be sure we are up to date in the latest, and best forms of laser treatment for you and your family!

Join our conversation today on Facebook by clicking HERE!

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Taking Charge of Your Health

Is Your Neuropathy Making You Feel Like You’ve Lost Control?

Neuropathy symptoms can make you feel like your health has spun out of control. But regardless of the particulars of your situation, there’s one thing for sure—anxiety and disappointment about the state of your personal healthcare are likely exacerbating your symptoms.

The number one reason to step in and take charge of your own wellness is that feeling in control will make you feel better. Anxiety can compound existing symptoms (such as trouble sleeping) and create new ones by putting the focus on what’s not working. But it’s important to remember that you DO have control over many of the factors that can positively influence your health in a big way.

Many people come to us looking for a “magic bullet,” one simple pill or procedure that will cure neuropathy overnight and permanently. They want a neuropathy treatment formula in a bottle like a one-a-day supplement.

Of course, there are many medically-based aspects to our treatment program, but there are also several significant components of the program that are completely in your control as beneficial lifestyle changes to impact neuropathy. Here are just two simple examples of things that YOU can control in your healthcare, starting today.

First, begin making small, gradual improvements in your diet. Start by weaning away from sodas and processed foods. Notice that you don’t have to go cold turkey or give them up “forever.” Just switch to thinking of them as occasional treats. Choose organic and local produce and other foods whenever you can. Seek out natural and healthy alternatives to your usual meal routine.

Second, get moving. Many people shudder at the thought of doing “exercise”. Forget all that and just start moving more than usual—a walk around the block twice a day, slow-dancing to the oldies in your living room, or even vigorous housework or gardening are all candidates for healthy and fun exercise. Make sure you check with your doctor first to find out what’s appropriate for you.

The key is to think of “diet and exercise” not as unreachable fitness goals but as things you already incorporate into your everyday life. Just introduce a small shift in the WAY you do these things, and let a tiny pebble of intention turn into an avalanche of increased health!

For more information on coping with neuropathy, get your Free E-Book and subscribe to our newsletters at http://neuropathydr.com.

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HIV/AIDS and Peripheral Neuropathy

If you have HIV/AIDS, at some point in the progression of your disease you’ll probably develop peripheral nerve damage or peripheral neuropathy. HIV/AIDS peripheral neuropathy is common by most estimates, in roughly one-third of HIV/AIDS patients especially in advanced cases.

While that may not be surprising, what you should also know is that some forms of peripheral nerve damage like Guillain-Barre Syndrome and Chronic Inflammatory Demyelinating Polyneuropathy (CIDP) may affect early onset patients.

Your doctor may even be able to tell how far your HIV/AIDS has progressed by diagnosing the type of peripheral neuropathy you’ve developed.  As your disease progresses, your peripheral neuropathy will as well.

Exactly What Is Peripheral Neuropathy?

Peripheral neuropathy is a condition that develops when the peripheral nervous system is damaged by a condition like diabetes, cancer or HIV/AIDS.  When these nerves are damaged, they no longer communicate properly and all the bodily functions they govern are disrupted.

Depending upon which nerves are damaged and the functions they serve, you can develop serious or even life threatening symptoms.

Why Do AIDS Patients Develop Peripheral Neuropathy?

HIV/AIDS patients develop peripheral neuropathy for a number of reasons[1]:

•      The virus can cause neuropathy.

Viruses can attack nerve tissue and severely damage sensory nerves. If those nerves are damaged, you’re going to feel the pain, quickly.

The virus that causes HIV, in particular, can cause extensive damage to the peripheral nerves.  Often, the progression of the disease can actually be tracked according to the specific type of neuropathy the patient develops.  Painful polyneuropathy affecting the feet and hands can be one of first clinical signs of HIV infection.

•      Certain medications can cause peripheral neuropathy.

Peripheral neuropathy is a potential side effect of certain medications used to treat HIV/AIDS.  Nucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitors (NRTI’s) or, in layman’s terms, the “d-drugs” (i.e., Didanosine, Videx, Zalcitabine, Hivid, Stavudine and Zerit) most often cause peripheral neuropathy.

Other drugs, such as those used to treat pneumocystis pneumonia, amoebic dysentery, Kaposi’s sarcoma, non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma, other cancers, wasting syndrome and severe mouth ulcers can all lead to peripheral neuropathy as well.

•      Opportunistic infections that HIV/AIDS patients are prone to develop are another cause of peripheral neuropathy.

The hepatitis C virus, Varicella zoster virus (shingles), syphilis and tuberculosis are all infections that can lead to problems with the peripheral nervous system.

How Do You Know If You Have Peripheral Neuropathy?

Most HIV/AIDS patients with peripheral neuropathy complain of[2]:

•     Burning

•     Stiffness

•     Prickly feeling in their extremities

•     Tingling

•     Numbness or loss of sensation in the toes and soles of the feet

•     Progressive weakness

•     Dizziness

•     Loss of bladder and bowel control

Why Should You Worry About Peripheral Neuropathy?

If your peripheral neuropathy affects the autonomic nervous system, you could develop

•     Blood pressure problems

•     Heart rate issues

•     Bladder or bowel control issues

•     Difficulty swallowing because your esophagus doesn’t function properly

•     Bloating

•     Heart burn

•     Inability to feel sensation in your hands and feet

Beyond being uncomfortable, any of these conditions can cause serious health issues; some can even be fatal.

Treatment Options for Peripheral Neuropathy

If you have HIV/AIDS and you think you’ve developed peripheral neuropathy, see a specialist immediately.  A good place to start is with your local NeuropathyDR® clinician for a treatment plan specifically designed for you.

You can help your neuropathy specialist treat you and help yourself, too, by:

•     Stop taking the drugs that cause peripheral neuropathy (but never discontinue drug therapy without supervision by your treating physician)

•     Start non-drug treatments to reduce pain like avoiding walking or standing for long periods, wearing looser shoes, and/or soaking your feet in ice water.

•     Make sure you’re eating properly.

•     Take safety precautions to compensate for any loss of sensation in your hands and feet, like testing your bath water with your elbow to make sure it’s not too hot or checking your shoes to make sure you don’t have a small rock or pebble in them before you put them on.

•     Ask about available pain medications if over the counter drugs aren’t helping.

Contact us today for information on the best course of treatment to deal with the pain of peripheral neuropathy caused by HIV/AIDS and taking steps to ensure that you don’t have permanent nerve damage.

For more information on coping with peripheral neuropathy, get your Free E-Book and subscription to the Weekly Ezine “Beating Neuropathy” at http://neuropathydr.com.

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“Failed Back Surgery Syndrome”

The minute you injured you back, your life changed forever…

The constant pain…

The loss of mobility…

The inability to live a normal life.

You wanted so desperately to feel normal again you agreed to back surgery.

And your pain is worse than ever.

If you’ve undergone back surgery and you’re still suffering from

Dull, aching pain in your back and/or legs

Abnormal sensitivity including sharp, pricking, and stabbing pain in your arms or legs

Peripheral neuropathy and the symptoms that go with it – numbness, tingling, loss of sensation or even burning in your arms and legs

You could have “Failed Back Surgery Syndrome” or “FBSS”.

You’re not alone.  Back surgeries fail so often now they actually have a name for the condition patients develop when it happens.  As back pain experts, NeuropathyDR® clinicians see patients like you almost every day.

What Exactly Is “Failed Back Surgery Syndrome”?

Failed Back Surgery Syndrome[1] is what the medical community calls the chronic pain in the back and/or legs that happens after a patient undergoes back surgery.

Several things can contribute to the development of Failed Back Surgery Syndrome.  It can be caused by a herniated disc not corrected by the surgery, swelling or a “mechanical” neuropathy that causes pressure on the spinal nerves, a change in the way your joints move, even depression or anxiety.

If you smoke, have diabetes or any autoimmune or vascular disease, you have a much higher chance of developing Failed Back Surgery Syndrome.

If you do have any of these conditions, think long and hard before you agree to back surgery.

Non-Surgical Treatments for Failed Back Surgery Syndrome

You know you don’t want another surgery and who could blame you? You’ve already been through the pain of surgery and recovery only to be in worse shape than you were before the surgery.

The good news is that there are some excellent alternatives to surgery.  One of the best places to start is with your local NeuropathyDr® specialist.

NeuropathyDR® clinicians have a treatment protocol is often perfect for treating Failed Back Surgery Syndrome.

Hallmarks of for the chronic back pain associated with Failed Back Surgery Syndrome are:

Therapeutic massage to manipulate the soft tissues of the body to relax the muscles and eliminate “knots” in the muscles that can cause or contribute to your back pain and other symptoms.

Manual therapy to restore motion to the vertebrae, alleviate pressure and get your spine and muscular system back into proper alignment.

Yoga and other low impact exercises to aid in relaxation, pain management and alleviating stress and depression.

Proper nutrition to help your body heal itself.  This is especially important if you have diabetes or some other underlying illness that could be contributing to your peripheral neuropathy.

All of these are components of the NeuropathyDR® treatment protocol.

The right combination of these treatment approaches in the hands of a knowledgeable health care provider, well versed in the treating Failed Back Surgery Syndrome, can be an excellent alternative to yet another surgery.

If you’re tired of living with the pain and don’t want to go under the knife again, contact your local NeuropathyDR® specialist to see if their exclusive protocol for treating chronic back pain, peripheral neuropathy and Failed Back Surgery Syndrome will work for you.

You’ll leave us wishing you had made the call sooner.

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Peripheral Neuropathy Caused by Immune Malfunction or CIDP

A Chronic Immune Disorder Like CIDP Can Cause a Range of Peripheral Neuropathy Symptoms.

Immune disorders, in which your body’s own systems begin to attack good cells as if they were invaders, can cause weak nerve responses and peripheral neuropathy issues.

These nerve problems can range from:

  • Tingling or numbness in hands or feet
  • Pain in extremities
  • Lost reflexes and weak muscle response
  • Unrelenting sense of tiredness
  • Fainting
  • Trouble with mobility

These peripheral neuropathy symptoms are a clue that you may be experiencing a specific type of immune disease known as CIDP, short for “chronic inflammatory demyelinating polyneuropathy.” It’s an acquired disorder that shares many features with Guillain-Barre Syndrome.

In short, the immune system malfunctions, attacking the nervous system, which causes damage to the myelin sheath—a protective covering that is supposed to shield nerves from harm.

With CIDP, peripheral neuropathy symptoms can progress very rapidly, and yet you may also have good days. If you happen to see your doctor on a good day, you may not get an accurate diagnosis. Over time, the bad days can include issues with bladder and bowel control, walking, and other major functions. Be sure to track your symptoms and share this detailed list with your doctor to add in a correct diagnosis. He or she will want to see evidence of at least 8 weeks’ worth of symptoms for a CIDP diagnosis.

Your doctor should also do several tests to help narrow the diagnosis, possibly including a nerve conductor series, blood tests to rule out different autoimmune disorders, and in some cases a nerve biopsy.

CIDP isn’t currently curable, but your peripheral neuropathy symptoms can be treated and managed well. New medical treatments though are getting better every year!

There are also many steps you can take at home to help repair your immune system and support healing. Through dietary choices, exercise, and home treatment protocols like our NDGen Neurostimulator, you can take charge of your wellness.

A great place to start is our neuropathy owners manual, I Beat Neuropathy!

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Diabetic Neuropathy Results!

Neuropathy Treatment Success!

I had the good fortune of seeing several diabetic neuropathy patients in our clinic recently.

As you probably know a very large number of patients who suffer from diabetes go on to develop neuropathy. Furthermore, just getting the diabetes under control does not treat the neuropathy. So more than 75% of the time patients develop diabetic neuropathy require specific neuropathy treatment.

That’s what makes these cases, and the patient care we now have available so exciting!

The first patient had completed her initial weeks of NeuropathyDR care a month ago, and still her diabetic neuropathy continues to improve, BUT not only that, her blood sugar levels are continuing to drop, and exercise tolerance is increasing. After years of total misery and worsening neuropathy.

The second gentleman, a new patient started on Monday, had been miserable for 5 years, and after just the third session, is already sleeping better, even his foot mobility has improved. He has had such bad foot cramps and burning foot pain that can not even sleep without socks.

Finally, successful neuropathy treatment and encouragement. Real Results. Our Doctors and Physical Therapists who really take the time to care for the entire patient.

If you or a loved one are suffering, these cases are showing steady, real progress in beating neuropathy!

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Neuropathy Symptoms and Vitamin D

With Neuropathy Symptoms, Vitamin D can Make a Big Difference in Quality of Life.

We’re still learning about the powers of vitamin D, but we do know for sure based on research that this vitamin has a significant effect on building a strong immune system. Vitamin D is also important for helping to maintain bone mass.

These are two aspects of vitamin D’s role in the body that makes it an important nutrient for people struggling with neuropathy symptoms.

But even more important is vitamin D’s role is manufacturing substances called neutropins that help repair damaged nerves and grow new ones.

If you have neuropathy symptoms, you can help to support your own body’s production of neutropins, first by following a diet that includes vitamin D along with other essential neuropathy nutrients, and secondly by using appropriate neuropathy therapies such as neurostimulation.

The research strongly supports that neurostimulator therapies are appropriate and effective for many, if not most, patients suffering from neuropathy symptoms.

When paired with the right diet including vitamin D, these therapies can be incredibly effective in reducing neuropathy symptoms and neuropathic pain.

You may be wondering about the right daily amount of vitamin D that neuropathy patients should take.

It definitely depends on who you ask!

The official United States stance on vitamin D dosage is that you should have up to 600 IU (international units) every day. But other countries recommend higher levels, up to even 10,000 IU a day. This is based on the idea that most people just do not get much vitamin D from diet or sun exposure and so will need supplementation.

It’s not really possible to get enough vitamin D from plant sources. Fish oil is the best available form of supplement containing vitamin D.

I highly recommend to all new patients in our clinics to get their vitamin D levels checked. Then they can work together with their NeuropathyDR® clinicians to decide on the best daily dosage for supplementation.

Looking for more advice on dietary supplements to reduce neuropathy symptoms? Take a look at our Neuropathy Owners Manual, I Beat Neuropathy!

Neuropathy Symptoms and Vitamin D is a post from: #1 in Neuropathy & Chronic Pain Treatment

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Compressive Neuropathy Symptoms and What to Do About Them

Got a herniated disc, slipped disc, or ruptured disc? Read this key information on compressive neuropathy.

If you suffer from compressive neuropathy (a herniated, ruptured, or slipped disc), you already know that chronic back pain is one of the worst kinds of pain in existence.

When your back hurts, you just can’t get comfortable in any position and it seems like the pain will never stop no matter what you do.

You may have been told that your back pain is due to misalignment of your spine. But it’s more complex than that. The back pain you are experiencing is most likely due to compressive neuropathy, a type of peripheral nerve damage that can result in a host of unpleasant symptoms. For example:

  • Cold or a burning sensation in the legs or feet, typically on only one side of your body
  • Leg or foot tingling or numbness that is persistent
  • Muscle spasms
  • Sudden shooting pain like an electric shock

These pain sensations, over time, can lead to psychological problems as well. Many people with compressive neuropathy experience anxiety, depression, insomnia, and difficulty functioning in their everyday lives. You may not be able to continue working at your job or to spend social time with friends and family due to your pain.

Nerve damage like this can often be relieved with appropriate treatment. On the other hand, if left untreated, compressive neuropathy can become permanent damage with severe quality of life implications.

What are the main goals of professional treatment for compressive neuropathy?

The first goal is always pain relief. After that, treatment should address numbness or weakness in the low back, legs, and feet due to the impact of these areas on general mobility. Another goal is to prevent any future injuries that can worsen the existing nerve damage.

A NeuropathyDR® clinician is the optimal treatment choice for anyone with herniated disc pain or compressive neuropathy. This highly trained neuropathy expert will accurately diagnose your pain and customize a treatment plan based on YOUR needs. Click here to find a NeuropathyDR® clinician near you.

Compressive Neuropathy Symptoms and What to Do About Them is a post from: #1 in Neuropathy & Chronic Pain Treatment

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Neuropathy Basics: Distinguishing Sensory Neuropathy from Motor Neuropathy

What You Need to Know about the Two Types of Neuropathy and How to Treat Them

Why is neuropathy so difficult sometimes to diagnose and treat?

Well, for starters, there is no one disorder known as neuropathy. Technically, it’s an entire group of issues ranging from basic to complex.

One helpful way of subdividing this class of disorders is to think about sensory vs. motor. Sensory neuropathy is about sensation or lack of sensation—in other words, tingling or pain on one end of the spectrum and numbness on the other end.

Losing sensation can also affect balance, which is a major quality of life issue.

Things like diabetic neuropathy (in its early stages), neuropathy related to metabolic syndrome, and chemotherapy induced neuropathy are examples of sensory neuropathies.

On the other hand, motor (or movement) neuropathy describes a loss of power and strength in the muscles. The major symptom of this type of neuropathy is muscle weakness.

Unfortunately, motor issues can be difficult to diagnose and even harder to treat. You can end up with motor neuropathy as a side effect of a Lyme disease infection, or it can be genetic.

What’s important to know about sensory vs. motor neuropathy is that even the most advanced cases with the worst symptoms can often show some amount of improvement through self care. That means good nutrition, physical therapy, and at-home neurostimulation techniques. Some types of supplements may also help, such as CoQ10.

Even though I’m urging self care, I want to make sure you truly understand that a good self care protocol and treatment plan is always developed in collaboration with a knowledgeable neuropathy clinician.

If you don’t know where to turn to find a trained neuropathy expert in your local area, click here for a list of NeuropathyDR® clinicians sorted by region.

Neuropathy Basics: Distinguishing Sensory Neuropathy from Motor Neuropathy is a post from: #1 in Neuropathy & Chronic Pain Treatment

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