Print Overview Diabetic neuropathy is a type of nerve damage that can occur if you have diabetes. High blood sugar (glucose) can injure nerve fibers throughout your body, but diabetic neuropathy most often damages nerves in your legs and feet. Depending on the affected nerves, symptoms of diabetic neuropathy can range from pain and numbness in your extremities to problems with your digestive system, urinary tract, blood vessels and heart. For some people, these symptoms are mild; for others, diabetic neuropathy can be painful, disabling and even fatal. Diabetic neuropathy is a common serious complication of diabetes. Yet you can often prevent diabetic neuropathy or slow its progress with tight blood sugar control and a healthy lifestyle. Symptoms There are four main types of diabetic neuropathy. You may have just one type or symptoms of several types. Most develop gradually, and you may not notice problems until considerable damage has occurred. The signs and symptoms of diabetic neuropathy vary, depending on the type of neuropathy and which nerves are affected. Peripheral neuropathy Peripheral neuropathy is the most common form of diabetic neuropathy. Your feet and legs are often affected first, followed by your hands and arms. Signs and symptoms of peripheral neuropathy are often worse at night, and may include: Numbness or reduced ability to feel pain or temperature changes A tingling or burning sensation Sharp pains or cramps Increased sensitivity to touch — for some people, even the weight of a bed sheet can be agonizing Muscle weakness Loss of reflexes, especially in the ankle Loss of balance and coordination Serious foot problems, such as ulcers, infections, deformities, and bone and joint pain Autonomic neuropathy The autonomic nervous system controls your hea Continue reading >>
What is Diabetic Neuropathy Diabetic neuropathy is a type of nerve damage that happens in people who have diabetes mellitus. It affects mainly the peripheral nerves. There are three types of peripheral nerve affected: motor, sensory, and autonomic. Motor nerve fibres carry signals to muscles to allow motions like walking and fine finger movements. Sensory nerves take messages in the opposite direction. They carry information to the brain about shape, movement, texture, warmth, coolness, or pain from special sensors in the skin and from deep in the body. Autonomic nerves are nerves that are not consciously controlled. These nerves have functions such as controlling the heart rate, maintaining blood pressure, and controlling sweating. Damage to these nerves makes it hard for the nerves to carry messages to the brain and other parts of the body. This can result in numbness (loss of feeling) or painful tingling in parts of the body. Diabetic neuropathy can also affect the following: Strength and feeling in different body parts. Ability of the heart to keep up with the body’s needs. Ability of the intestines to digest food. Ability to achieve an erection (in men). Statistics on Diabetic Neuropathy Diabetes mellitus is a common medical condition in the Australian community. It is estimated that approximately one in four Australians over the age of 25 years has diabetes or its precursor, impaired glucose metabolism (also associated with increased risk of heart disease). People with diabetes can develop nerve problems at any time, but the longer a person has diabetes, the greater the risk. Patients with type 2 diabetes are at greater risk particularly if they have poor control of their blood sugars. The highest rates of neuropathy are among people who have had the disease for Continue reading >>
The Neuropathy In My Legs Is Causing Severe Muscle Weakness, Loss Of Balance And Coordination?
Home Q & A Questions The neuropathy in my legs is... The neuropathy in my legs is causing severe muscle weakness, loss of balance and coordination? depression , peripheral neuropathy , vertigo , back pain , fatigue , muscle This is steadily getting worse. I called my neurologist and could not even get an appointment to discuss anything. She said there is nothing that can be done for me. I asked about special shoes or anything to help with the balance and lack of coordination. I walk like a drunk all the time and have fallen a lot. I am very discouraged as I feel like the medical world has given up on me. My pain doctor will only discuss a pain stimulator. Has anyone else gotten to this point or know of something I can try? I am desperate, I feel like there is no hope Have you asked about physical therapy? You should be using a walker to help you ambulate if you are weak and unbalanced to the point of falling. Sometimes neuropathy does get to a point where nothing much can be done. Physical therapy should be able to help you strengthen to your maximum ability and a walker will help keep you balanced so that you dont fall. I have done therapy, insurance says I have had enough and cant pay out of pocket as it is very expensive. I use a cane most days and I do have a walker I use when I have to but I have also fallen using the walker. My legs just give out and I fall. I try to do some light stretching every day I cant do anything strenuous I have back issues also. Its very frustrating. Thanks, I appreciate your feedback Have you spoken to a podiatrist? They are "foot and ankle" specialists and may be able to fit you for orthotics. Keep hollering and complaining. A squeaky wheel gets greased! Sometimes you just have to keep after some Drs. Get second opinions and third opin Continue reading >>
What Is Diabetic Neuropathy?
Diabetes can harm your nerves. That damage, called neuropathy, may be painful. It can happen in several ways, and they all seem to be related to blood sugar levels being too high for too long. To prevent it, work with your doctor to manage your blood sugar. You may hear your doctor mention the four types of diabetes-related neuropathy: peripheral, autonomic, proximal, and focal. Peripheral Neuropathy This type usually affects the feet and legs. Rare cases affect the arms, abdomen, and back. Symptoms include: Tingling Numbness (which may become permanent) Burning (especially in the evening) Pain Early symptoms usually get better when your blood sugar is under control. There are medications to help manage the discomfort. What you should do: Check your feet and legs daily. Use lotion on your feet if they're dry. Take care of your toenails. Ask your doctor if you should go to a podiatrist. Wear shoes that fit well. Wear them all the time, so your feet don't get injured. Autonomic Neuropathy This type usually affects the digestive system, especially the stomach. It can also affect the blood vessels, urinary system, and sex organs. In your digestive system: Symptoms include: Bloating Diarrhea Constipation Heartburn Nausea Vomiting Feeling full after small meals What you should do: You may need to eat smaller meals and take medication to treat it. In blood vessels: Symptoms include: Blacking out when you stand up quickly Faster heartbeat Dizziness Low blood pressure Nausea Vomiting Feeling full sooner than normal If you have it: Avoid standing up too quickly. You may also need to wear special stockings (ask your doctor about them) and take medicine. In Men: Symptoms include: He may not be able to have or keep an erection, or he may have “dry” or reduced ejaculations. What Continue reading >>
A Progressive Late Complication in Diabetic Distal Symmetric Polyneuropathy Abstract The aim of the study was to determine the progression of muscle weakness in long-term diabetes and its relation to the neuropathic condition. Thirty patients were recruited from a cohort of 92 diabetic patients who participated in a study on muscular function 6–8 years earlier. Nine subjects were nonneuropathic, 9 had asymptomatic neuropathy, and 12 had symptomatic neuropathy. Thirty matched control subjects who participated in the initial studies were also included. At follow-up, isokinetic dynamometry at the ankle, electrophysiological studies, vibratory perception thresholds, and clinical examination (neuropathy symptom score and neurological disability score [NDS]) were repeated. The annual decline of strength at the ankle was 0.7 ± 1.7% in control subjects, 0.9 ± 1.9% in nonneuropathic patients, 0.7 ± 3.1% in asymptomatic neuropathic patients, and 3.2 ± 2.3% in symptomatic neuropathic patients. In the symptomatic patients, the decline of muscle strength at the ankle was significant when compared with matched control subjects (P = 0.002) and with the other diabetic groups (P = 0.023). Also, the annual decline of muscle strength at the ankle was related to the combined score of all measures of neuropathy (r = −0.42, P = 0.03) and to the NDS (r = −0.52, P = 0.01). In patients with symptomatic diabetic neuropathy, weakness of ankle plantar and dorsal flexors is progressive and related to the severity of neuropathy. Diabetic polyneuropathy presents with sensory disturbances. Later on, motor disturbances can occur in more severe conditions, leading to distal weakness and atrophy of the muscles of the lower leg and foot. Accordingly, inability to walk on heels is used to identif Continue reading >>
Weak Legs And Balance Problems
Diabetes Forum The Global Diabetes Community Find support, ask questions and share your experiences. Join the community Hi. I was wondering if anyone else has or is experiencing the same complications that I am. My sugars have been very high for some time now as I suffer with Diabulimia. For the last several months I have foung that I am unable to climb a flight of stairs. The only wsy I can do it is to pull myself up using the banister or go up the stairs on all fours. Its as if I have no strength in my legs. I slso find that I am unable to wear heels anymore and can only walk short distances before I need to take a rest...not because im tired but because my legs feel like they're going to give way. They always feel as if ive walked fifty miles already when I've just started and dont improve with more walking. The other thing that is affecting me is my balance. I didnt even know this could be affected...my dsn confirmed my balance has been affected by nerve damage. It feels like I'm drunk when I'm stood up or walking...not as in having a fuzzy head but in the respect that i have to really concentrate on standing and walking my feet and legs wont always do what I want them too. I know this is all down to my Diabulimia which I am trying to get help with.iam only 37 but honestly feel like a 90 year old. I was wandering if anybody else suffers with these complications as id love to hear from you. There's a number of possibilities with these symptoms , most but not all of them related to diabetes, so best to ask to have them checked out. Postural hypotension (auto nerve damage) can cause dizziness due to blood pressure not responding quickly enough when you first stand up from sitting etc. Trick is to take your time when first standing. Peripheral neuropathy can cause diff Continue reading >>
When Diabetes Leads To Nerve Damage
Tingling, numbness, pain in the arms, legs, hands, or feet — these are all common signs of diabetic neuropathy, or nerve damage. Up to 70 percent of people with diabetes will develop some type of neuropathy, making it one of the most common side effects of this disease. Diabetes: Understanding Neuropathy Although tingling, numbness, or pain in the extremities are common signs of neuropathy, others may experience no symptoms at all. Nerve damage can also occur in internal organs, such as the heart or digestive tract. Diabetes-related neuropathy can affect muscle strength, sensation in various parts of the body, and even sexual function. People who develop diabetic neuropathy are typically those who have trouble controlling their blood glucose levels, blood pressure, cholesterol, and body weight. Although researchers haven't quite figured out exactly why this happens, they know that neuropathy can occur due to: Alcohol use and smoking Genetic predisposition Injuries such as carpal tunnel syndrome Nerves that become inflamed related to autoimmune conditions Neurovascular issues that damage the blood vessels responsible for bringing nutrients and oxygen to your nerves Your risk also increases the older you get and the longer you have diabetes, with the highest rates of neuropathy occuring in people who have had diabetes for at least 25 years. Diabetes: Where Neuropathy May Strike Here are some of the specific types of neuropathy that occur in people with diabetes: Autonomic neuropathy impairs the functioning of the digestive system, resulting in diarrhea or constipation as well as impaired bladder function. This type of neuropathy also affects how you perspire and even your sexual response — men may have trouble getting an erection and women may experience vaginal dryne Continue reading >>
Proximal Diabetic Neuropathy
Proximal diabetic neuropathy, more commonly known as diabetic amyotrophy, is a nerve disorder that results as a complication of diabetes mellitus. It can affect the thighs, hips, buttocks or lower legs. Proximal diabetic neuropathy is a peripheral nerve disease (diabetic neuropathy) characterized by muscle wasting or weakness, pain, or changes in sensation/numbness of the leg. Diabetic neuropathy is an uncommon complication of diabetes. It is a type of lumbosacral plexopathy, or adverse condition affecting the lumbosacral plexus. There are a number of ways that diabetes damages the nerves, all of which seem to be related to increased blood sugar levels over a long period of time. Proximal diabetic neuropathy is one of four types of diabetic neuropathy. Proximal diabetic neuropathy can occur in type 2 and type 1 diabetes mellitus patients however, it is most commonly found in type 2 diabetics. Proximal neuropathy is the second most common type of diabetic neuropathy and can be resolved with time and treatment. Signs & symptoms Signs and symptoms of proximal diabetic neuropathy depend on the region of the plexus which is affected. The first symptom is usually pain in the buttocks, hips, thighs or legs. This pain most commonly affects one side of the body and can either start gradually or come on suddenly. This is often followed by variable weakness in the proximal muscles of the lower limbs. These symptoms, although often beginning on one side, can also spread to both sides. Weakness in proximal diabetic neuropathy is caused by denervation of the specific muscles innervated by regions of the plexus affected and can thus these muscles may start exhibiting fasciculations. Note that diabetic amyotrophy is a condition caused by diabetes mellitus, but sepa Continue reading >>
Add Muscle Weakness As Another Cost Of Type 1 Diabetes
WEDNESDAY, April 18, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- Poor muscle health may be a complication of type 1 diabetes, even in young people who get plenty of exercise. That's the finding of Canadian researchers who analyzed muscle samples from young adults with and without type 1 diabetes who did more than the weekly amount of exercise recommended by Diabetes Canada. In the young adults with diabetes, the muscle biopsies revealed structural and functional changes in the "power plants" (mitochondria) of cells. The mitochondria produced lower-than-normal amounts of energy and released high amounts of toxins that cause cell damage. These changes could lead to slower metabolism, greater difficulty controlling blood sugar and a faster onset of disability, according to the authors of the study, published April 18 in the journal Diabetologia. The authors said their findings show that poor muscle health should be added to the known complications of type 1 diabetes, along with nerve damage, heart disease and kidney disorders. "Now we know that even active people with diabetes have changes in their muscles that could impair their ability to manage blood sugar," said corresponding author Thomas Hawke. He is a professor of pathology and molecular medicine at McMaster University in Hamilton, Ontario. "Knowing in the long term that this could contribute to faster development of disability, we can start to address it early on," Hawke added in a journal news release. Study co-senior author Christopher Perry explained that "skeletal muscle is our largest metabolic organ and is the primary tissue for clearing blood sugar after eating a meal, so we need to keep muscle as healthy as possible." Perry is an associate professor at the Muscle Health Research Center at York University in Toronto. The find Continue reading >>
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Diabetic amyotrophy is a nerve disorder complication of diabetes mellitus. It affects the thighs, hips, buttocks and legs, causing pain and muscle wasting. What is diabetic amyotrophy? Diabetic amyotrophy is a nerve disorder which is a complication of diabetes mellitus. It affects the thighs, hips, buttocks and legs, causing pain and muscle wasting. It is also called by several other names, including proximal diabetic neuropathy, lumbosacral radiculoplexus neurophagy and femoral neurophagy. What is diabetic amyotrophy like? The main features of diabetic amyotrophy are: Weakness of the lower legs, buttocks or hip. Muscle wasting, usually in the front of the thigh, which follows within weeks. Pain, sometimes severe, usually in the front of the thigh but sometimes in the hip, buttock or back. Other features which occur in some (but not all) patients are: Altered sensation and tingling in the thigh, hip or buttock, which tends to be mild in comparison to the pain and weakness. About half of patients also have distal neuropathy, meaning that sensation in the nerves of the lower legs and feet may be separately affected by this condition (which is the most common form of diabetic neuropathy). Learn more about diabetic neuropathy. About half of people affected lose weight. Symptoms generally begin on one side and then spread to the other in a stepwise progression. The condition may come on quickly or more slowly and usually remains asymmetrical (ie the two sides of the body are unequally affected) throughout its course. About half of patients also have distal symmetrical polyneuropathy, which means the sensation in their feet and toes on both sides is also affected. The condition tends to go on for several months but can last up to three years. By the end of this time it usuall Continue reading >>
Diabetic Leg Pain And Peripheral Arterial Disease
Cramping, pain, or tiredness in the legs when walking or climbing stairs — these may not sound like symptoms of a serious condition. In fact, many people believe that they are normal signs of aging. But they can be signs of peripheral arterial disease, a severe condition that can lead to gangrene and amputation if left untreated. So if you have these symptoms, be sure to tell your doctor. Peripheral arterial disease (PAD) is a condition in which arteries leading to the legs and feet (or in some cases the arms) become clogged with fatty deposits called plaque, resulting in reduced or blocked blood flow to these areas. It affects between 8 million and 12 million Americans, and people with diabetes are more likely to develop PAD than the general population. PAD is also known as peripheral vascular disease (PVD), leg atherosclerosis, or simply poor circulation. PAD and diabetes Anyone can develop PAD, but people with diabetes, especially those with Type 2 diabetes, have a higher risk of developing it because of a series of bodily changes associated with diabetes, including insulin resistance, a higher level of blood fats, and an increase in blood pressure. All of these contribute to arteries becoming clogged with fatty deposits, leading to the hardening and narrowing of these blood vessels. Having diabetes also increases the risk of developing neuropathy, or nerve damage, as a result of high blood glucose. Neuropathy can cause decreased sensation in the feet and legs, which can cause a person not to notice small injuries to the foot, such as blisters or cuts. If a person continues to walk on an injury, it is likely to enlarge and get infected. The combination of PAD and neuropathy is particularly dangerous because when blood flow to the feet is reduced, the body has a har Continue reading >>
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Nerve Damage (diabetic Neuropathies)
What are diabetic neuropathies? Diabetic neuropathies are a family of nerve disorders caused by diabetes. People with diabetes can, over time, develop nerve damage throughout the body. Some people with nerve damage have no symptoms. Others may have symptoms such as pain, tingling, or numbness—loss of feeling—in the hands, arms, feet, and legs. Nerve problems can occur in every organ system, including the digestive tract, heart, and sex organs. About 60 to 70 percent of people with diabetes have some form of neuropathy. People with diabetes can develop nerve problems at any time, but risk rises with age and longer duration of diabetes. The highest rates of neuropathy are among people who have had diabetes for at least 25 years. Diabetic neuropathies also appear to be more common in people who have problems controlling their blood glucose, also called blood sugar, as well as those with high levels of blood fat and blood pressure and those who are overweight. What causes diabetic neuropathies? The causes are probably different for different types of diabetic neuropathy. Researchers are studying how prolonged exposure to high blood glucose causes nerve damage. Nerve damage is likely due to a combination of factors: metabolic factors, such as high blood glucose, long duration of diabetes, abnormal blood fat levels, and possibly low levels of insulin neurovascular factors, leading to damage to the blood vessels that carry oxygen and nutrients to nerves autoimmune factors that cause inflammation in nerves mechanical injury to nerves, such as carpal tunnel syndrome inherited traits that increase susceptibility to nerve disease lifestyle factors, such as smoking or alcohol use What are the symptoms of diabetic neuropathies? Symptoms depend on the type of neuropathy and which Continue reading >>
Weak Legs | Diabetic Connect
I am a type II since 1989. I have been "in control" from the beginning; but it didn't seem to stop the neuropathy from progressing to the point that I use a cane most of the time. I am retired; but work a little part time at our local school as a custodian and at work, where I always have an "aid" in my hands (broom, mop, floor scrubber etc) I don't have much of a problem; but unaided i couldn't walk to the end of my street. I also ride a motorcycle; but that may stop soon as I do not feel I can hold it up at stops or back it in and out of my garage. Not at all satisfied with any of these problems or the suggestions I have heard to help relieve it. Hey Randy, My legs are not the best in the world. Would not win any contest of any sort. But they are mine. My legs I have notice that from the mid calf down, they are slightly discollored. They are darker then the rest of my leg. I dont think I have that good of circulation going on there. My calfs themselves are well deleloped. I do get tingling in my feet from time to time and muscle spams in my feet. hope its not connected. Good luck with your legs. i have poly neuropathy i have all the problems you described and more. it is all over my body now and there is never any relief. have you had a test to see if you have nerve damage? you would have to see a neurologist for this test. This last winter I was having a hard time sleeping at night with my legs twitching and tingling, my feet were cold all the time and could not hardly get them warm even with the inserts. I would get these sharp pains like someone was sticking a needle through me at different times, made me jump. The funny thing is that once I started taking metamucil it stopped, I was taking liquid tylenol as it seemed to help and have not had a dose since then. Th Continue reading >>
Diabetes Leg Pain And Cramps: Treatment Tips
Diabetes can lead to a variety of complications. Leg pain and cramps often occur as a result of nerve damage called diabetic neuropathy. If diabetes damages nerves in your arms or legs, it’s called diabetic peripheral neuropathy. This condition can be a direct result of long-term high blood sugar levels (hyperglycemia) in those who have diabetes. Pain, burning, tingling, and numbness are common symptoms. Peripheral neuropathy can also result in serious foot and leg conditions. Catching nerve damage early is important in preventing symptoms. This can help prevent lower leg amputations. You have options for alleviating leg pain and cramps due to diabetic neuropathy. Managing leg pain and cramps may also help prevent the condition from progressing and improve your quality of life. Diabetic neuropathy is most common in the legs and feet. Without treatment and management, it can become debilitating. The most important thing you can do to lower your risk of all complications, including diabetic neuropathy, is to keep your blood sugar level within the target range. If you have neuropathy, controlling blood sugar is still very important. But there are some other steps you can take to help control this condition. One of the first courses of action is pain management through medication. Over-the-counter medications, such as acetaminophen and ibuprofen, may help alleviate mild to moderate pain. Two medications are currently approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for treating diabetic peripheral neuropathy: Other medications and treatment options include the use of opioid medications, such as tramadol and tapentadol, and topical remedies and sprays. Certain dietary supplements may also help ease pain, including leg discomfort associated with diabetes. Some nutrie Continue reading >>
What Can I Do For Numb, Painful Feet And Legs?
My husband was diagnosed with diabetes almost a year ago. At first he was experiencing numbness in his feet. Over the past few months, he began having pain as well, sometimes as far up his leg as his calf. What can we do to help these symptoms? I have read that vitamin E and even flaxseed oil are good for the circulation. Would those be helpful? Continue reading >>