Friday, 21 December 2012

Acupuncture: A Neuropathy Treatment Option?

Today's article from (see link below) doesn't really go into any great detail about acupuncture methods for neuropathic symptoms but there are other posts on the blog which do (alphabetical list to the right). Instead, it is a good introductory article about neuropathy and its causes and current treatments, with the suggestion that acupuncture can be a worthwhile alternative. Two points: if you are considering acupuncture, please use a reputable acupuncturist who knows what he/she is doing and please be prepared for disappointment. Many people swear by acupuncture but equally as many have found no relief whatsoever; what's more, neurologists aren't that keen because of the lack of firm evidence but as with all neuropathy treatments - what works for you is evidence enough.

Peripheral Neuropathy And Acupuncture Treatment: Causes, Symptoms
  • Alcoholism: people taking alcohol regularly are prone to peripheral neuropathy.
  • Autoimmune diseases; SLE, Polyarteritis nodosa, rheumatoid arthritis etc.
  • Traumatic injury where the peripheral nerves are damaged can result in peripheral neuritis.
  • Kidney disease, liver disease and hypothyroidism can also cause peripheral neuropathy.
  • Viral infections such as HIV, Hepatitis C.

  • Peripheral Neuropathy Symptoms

    Clinical picture of peripheral neuropathy consists of sensory, motor, and autonomic disturbances. Sensory nerves receive the sensation of pain, heat, touch etc. Motor nerves control movement of muscles and autonomic nerves control blood pressure, heart rate, bladder function etc.
    Sensory symptoms include: pain, burning and light band like sensation. Extreme sensitivity to touch, even light touch seems to be painful.
    Motor symptoms include: muscle cramps, muscle weakness, wasting, tremor, and fasciculation etc.
    Autonomic symptoms include: fainting spells, reduced or excess sweating, sexual dysfunction, anorexia, nausea indicates gastroparesis.

    Acupuncture Treatment For Peripheral Neuropathy

    There are several conventional medicines to treat peripheral neuropathy. This may include prescription medications such as antidepressants, anti epileptics, etc. Acupuncture is an alternative and effective therapy for improvement in nerve conduction in patients suffering from peripheral neuropathy. In this therapy, fine needles are inserted in the skin at specific points along what are considered to be lines of energy (meridians).
    The system has originated in china. It is used to alleviate pain and it can also increase the immune response by balancing the flow of vital life throughout the body. By an estimate, at least 50 to 60 % of patients with chronic pain receive temporary relief when treated with acupuncture. While some patients experience long term relief as well.
    Though there is a debate of its effectiveness among scientific fraternity beyond that of a placebo, it should not matter whether the effects are physical or merely psychological as long as the patient feels better. Acupuncture treatment should be continued for weeks and months for better results. The time interval also depends on severity of the symptoms.
    Needles are inserted at specific points on the surface of body on both sides, in peripheral neuropathy. The points are located on hands or on the feet. It also depends which area has become numb.

    No comments:

    Post a Comment

    All comments welcome but advertising your own service or product will unfortunately result in your comment not being published.