“That Neuropathy Treatment Does Not Work…”

Some of the comments we get from neuropathy patients, and the docs and physical therapists who apply to NeuropathyDR, include things like, “What makes your neuropathy treatment different?”, or “I know about (a certain device); I have one…”, or “No one can help that type of neuropathy…” or the best without anything to support the comment “That Neuropathy Treatment Does Not Work…” Here is why NeuropathyDR so often works. If you have been reading our weekly articles, you know neuropathy is more than a single disease or condition. Neuropathy is part of diabetes about 60% of the time, and neuropathy occurs in certain forms of cancer drug therapy and for many more reasons.

But what most fascinates us as doctors is, every patient, even with similar diagnoses, responds differently! When we study the science, we know why this is so.

Different types of neuropathy attack different parts of the nerve cells; the ones damaged or impaired in neuropathy. Some affect the nerve cell body, some affect the long slender axons, and essential nutrients and toxins not being moved around in the cell as they do in healthy nerves even cause some neuropathies.

NeuropathyDR clinicians are trained to use their skills and training to provide each piece of the treatment puzzle. We spend a lot of time on the phone with our clinics, helping them solve tough cases.

Some of us have gone way beyond the training all our clinicians get, and spent many more hours obtaining Board Certification.

The most exciting part? Good neuropathy treatments may actually stimulate cells to repair. Some electric therapy forms and even laser neuropathy treatments are extraordinarily encouraging!

But, almost never does just ONE part of treatment help neuropathy patients for long. Especially if it’s a single product, usually pills or salves promoted to patients on-line!

So, the next time you are tempted to say, “I tried that neuropathy thing and it did not work,” remember that, unless everything is done that CAN be, like the comprehensive approach our team doctors use your neuropathy treatment results will likely not be as good as they could be!

Learn more about our products, services and clinics HERE 

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Is LLLT Effective Pain & Neuropathy Treatment?

LLLT (Low Level Light Therapy) including LLLT and laser in human healthcare dates back to the space program of the 1990s. But is LLLT effective pain and neuropathy treatment? The answer is a resounding yes, IF great equipment and trained physicians are utilized.

According to SBIR/NASA, LED has been utilized as part of cancer treatment, especially for a complication called oral mucositis. LEDs have also been used for improved wound healing, as well as “speeding deconditioned personnel to full duty performance”. LED (Light Emitting Diode) usage has also been approved by the Naval special warfare command. 1

But how exactly does this work? Well, the scientific explanations are highly technical. But what has been known for centuries is that light speeds healing. Once upon a time, ill patients from infectious disease units and TB wards were rolled out into sunlight daily. Wounds that failed to heal were also exposed to sunlight.

From a simple perspective though, we know that light energy is simply clusters of photons or energy particles that can penetrate tissue at selected depths.

We also know that various wavelengths of light can then have specific effects. The most important effect that may have a bearing on peripheral neuropathy and related conditions is the ability to stimulate metabolism, or cellular efficiency.

You see, all the work we have done in the treatment of peripheral neuropathy since 2008 has been focused upon improving cell energy. This also of course includes diet, exercise and certain other compounds found in nature such as amino acids, carnitine, and lipoic acid.

You probably also know we’ve extensively used electrotherapy via the NDGen® Neurostimulator.

 

With the combination of laser, both in clinic and at home with the Wearable Laser you see below, we are now able to expand our reach and help more patients than ever before with LLLT effective pain and neuropathy treatment.

Although the research is early, it is extraordinarily encouraging. Talk to our team about possibly adding light therapy to your treatment. Consider this especially if you suffer from diabetic neuropathy or other poor wound-healing complications.

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1 http://sbir.nasa.gov/SBIR/successes/ss/8-035text.html

Can LED Be Part of Effective Neuropathy Treatment? is a post from: Neuropathy Doctors and Physical Therapists| Neuropathy | Neuropathy Treatments | Neuropathy Doctors | Neuropathy Physical Therapists

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Fibromyalgia or Neuropathy—Which is it?

Very often we see patients who present with multiple health issues. Now, as you might expect in any chronic pain treatment center, this is not at all uncommon. But our treatment centers are different; we look at patients differently. Rather than simply attempting to calm pain, we look deeply for underlying causes. So a common scenario in a patient with chronic pain is sometimes Fibromyalgia or Neuropathy—Which is it?

One of the most interesting things is how deeply rooted lifestyle and personal habits are linked to many health problems. Fibromyalgia and neuropathy are no exception.

In both fibromyalgia and in many cases of neuropathy, patients are frequently overweight and in poor physical condition. Often times this “deconditioning” has been present for years. Contributing factors to this include things such as poor diet, and, yes, even health problems like underlying thyroid disease.

In both fibromyalgia and in neuropathy, patients often experience tingling, numbness, and significant amounts of pain. This is not at all surprising, since recent research suggests that some 30% plus fibromyalgia patients actually have small-fiber neuropathy.

Only time will tell how true this is in fact. I have long suspected this, however, since one of our observations many years ago was that many fibromyalgia patients responded very well to our neuropathy treatment programs, with some specific modifications. That’s why, right now, effective treatment depends so much upon the skill as well as the time and interest of the clinician.

Unfortunately, you are unlikely to find this in a public healthcare setting any longer. Most publically-employed doctors are simply under too much time pressure, with little financial benefit to treat patients who need the diligent care they so deserve.

This is unlikely to change in the foreseeable future.

At NeuropathyDR, we train our clinicians to be exceptional and diligent in the diagnosis of neuropathy and chronic pain. This includes fibromyalgia. And the reason for this should be very obvious. Once we understand as much as we possibly can about what may be underneath your symptoms, then we can begin the most effective neuropathy treatment plan possible.

And this goes double for those patients who suffer fibromyalgia-related chronic pain conditions!

Enjoy your day. Let our team help!

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A Common-Sense Approach to Neuropathy Treatment

One of the things that we see frequently are patients with pain or neuropathy symptoms for many years before having a professional evaluation. In these cases, it is so crucial to have very thorough evaluation before jumping to conclusions about what may or may not be going on. Making assumptions that are not based in fact is dangerous. This is a big reason you need to ask for a common-sense approach to neuropathy treatment.

Too often, patients search for answers without an accurate diagnosis and thus never have effective treatment. This is becoming more common, especially when the only consulting “doctors” have been Facebook and Google. This also means that too often today the actual conditions underlying or aggravating neuropathy are going untreated.

The consequences of this are dangerous. The longer you delay proper evaluation and treatment, the more difficult effective treatment could actually be.

This is not to say every case of neuropathy is curable; unfortunately, it is not.

But we now understand the impact of things like lifestyle, cigarette smoking, and body weight have on most forms of peripheral neuropathy, and related disorders such as fibromyalgia and chronic pain.

So here’s the best advice we can give you. Realize just how important it is to get the most accurate diagnosis possible and then proper treatment that targets the overall improvement of your health—early!  Work with healthcare professionals that understand all possible underlying causes of your situation.Be sure to identify any correctable things such as poor diet, cigarette smoking, et cetera.

Above all, it is important to take responsibility for your own care, in your own health. Neuropathy and chronic pain are not one-size-fits-all disorders. Patients who do the best realize this—and take action every single day.

Be sure to get regular physical activity as tolerated. Ask for proven modern treatments including neurostimulation and laser.

Finally, listen to your body. Pay attention to what it is telling you. Years from now, you’ll be glad you did.

Join us HERE for much more help and to contact us personally.

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When Counting Sheep Won’t Stop Peripheral Neuropathy Symptoms

Sleep disturbance is a very common human condition. In fact, sometimes it’s unavoidable. For most of us, fortunately, sleep disturbances are mild and brief. This is When Counting Sheep Won’t Stop Peripheral Neuropathy Symptoms…

Fotolia 36770769 S 300x199 When Counting Sheep Wont Stop Peripheral Neuropathy Symptoms

Space your meals and pay attention to things like too much sugar or too much caffeine.

However, when sleep disturbances or insomnia last for long periods of time, they can cause serious health problems.

Last time, we spoke extensively about RLS, or Restless Leg Syndrome. As you probably now know, RLS is often associated with peripheral neuropathy.

So let’s talk a bit more about sleep. Sleep is the time when both your brain and your body rest.

It’s part of normal 24-hour, or, Circadian, rhythms. During the normal sleep rhythms of the body, certain functions such as changes in our body temperature (which help induce sleep), and hormone levels that control things such as appetite take place.

But when things like peripheral neuropathy, restless leg syndrome, or even simple stress intervene, the net result is disturbance in all of the above. So, side effects from sleep disturbance can include weight gain, muscle aches and pains, overall lack of energy, and sometimes serious depression.

But what is the neuropathy sufferer to do? Well, fortunately, there are several things that can be done. First of all, work with your doctors to take appropriate dosages of medications, when absolutely necessary.

We also strongly suggest that you keep yourself is active during the day, if your condition allows. Wherever possible, this should include some exercise in bright sunlight.

Stay well hydrated. Dehydration or too much water consumption late in the day also disturbs sleep.

Space your meals and pay attention to things like too much sugar or too much caffeine.

Magnesium supplementation taken throughout the day may also be very helpful. We commonly suggest 200 to 400 mg of NDGen Magnesium per day into divided dosages. Never do this without your doctor’s knowledge, and never in the presence of kidney disease.

Finally, if you have not already taking advantage of one of our NDGen Home Care Kits which includes a unique neurostimulator, you should know that one of the chief reasons for owning these is that they can greatly help reduce painful symptoms when used 1-2 hours before bed—and thus help you sleep more easily.

They’re so easy to use, they will even shut themselves off with a built-in timer, which means you can go to bed with them on. Gentle electric stimulation often helps you feel better in a number of different ways. Don’t let sleep disturbance—whether due to peripheral neuropathy, RLS or some other condition—continue.

Pay attention to diet, and stress reduction. All of these things, plus the use of your NDGen home care kit will greatly facilitate a good night’s rest!

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When Counting Sheep Won’t Stop Peripheral Neuropathy Symptoms is a post from: Neuropathy | Neuropathy Doctors | Neuropathy Treatment | Neuropathy Treatments | Neuropathy Physical Therapists

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Are All the Peripheral Neuropathies the Same?

No. All the peripheral neuropathies are not the same. We find, though, that the patients who present with peripheral neuropathy, regardless of the cause, do have remarkably similar symptoms.

The good news with our treatment program has been that even in the presence of similar symptoms from different etiologies (causes), the corrective care for is often remarkably effective regardless of the primary cause. That is the beauty of the treatment system that we have been able to employ.

In order to find out what components of peripheral neuropathy you have, your doctor will need to conduct a very thorough evaluation. This will include things such as your vital signs, body mass index, the mobility and range of motion of your lower back and hips, and the overall health of your feet, skin, nails and hair, blood vessels and circulation. This might include Doppler ultrasound, a simple painless test to check for blood flow or blockages.

As the doctor performs her clinical examination, she’ll also perform a very thorough neurological examination including reflexes, muscle-testing, and sensation to touch using a device as simple as a pin, a brush or perhaps even a pinwheel. Doctors commonly will also check your vibration sensation, which very often is disturbed in peripheral neuropathy. This is done painlessly and very easily through the use of simple tuning forks. Your balance will be assessed.

Laboratory tests may very well be performed. These would include things such as a chemistry panel, kidney and liver function. Your doctor will also want to double check your blood sugar levels and more than likely perform a hemoglobin A1c.

This particular test is very good at identifying patients who may be borderline diabetic.

We find many patients who present with neuropathy symptoms have not yet been diagnosed with diabetes but may very well suffer from what’s called metabolic syndrome. This is when your body abnormally handles blood sugar, which may unfortunately lead to the development of neuropathy and other diabetic complications well before the formal diagnosis is made.

All the more reason to really be sure to work with the most knowledgeable physicians.

Let us help!

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Entrapment Neuropathy: More Than Just Carpal Tunnel!

An entrapment neuropathy occurs when a nerve is wedged or “pinched” against a bone, inflamed muscle, or other structure…

Most people have heard of carpal tunnel syndrome (CTS). What you might not know is that carpal tunnel syndrome is only one of a family of ailments in the upper limbs known as entrapment neuropathies. The other entrapment neuropathies are not as well-known in the mainstream as CTS, and so people who suffer from nerve symptoms in their forearms and hands frequently jump to conclusions. We are here to help set the record straight!

Diagnosis for compression neuropathies is usually straight forward…

An entrapment neuropathy, also called nerve compression syndrome, occurs when a nerve is wedged or “pinched” against a bone, inflamed muscle, or other internal mechanism in your arm. Aside from the median nerve (the one associated with CTS) there are two main nerves that help to control your arm and hand: the radial nerve and the ulnar nerve. Both are susceptible to compression, and the results can be painful!

Entrapment occurs under a number of conditions, most commonly:

  • When there is an injury originating at your neck or a disease of the cervical spine
  • When your elbow has been injured due to fractures or improper use
  • When your wrist has been injured due to fractures or Guyon canal alignment problems
  • Rarely, an aneurysm or thrombosis in your arteries
  • Factors commonly associated with peripheral neuropathy, such as diabetes, rheumatism, alcoholism, or infection

Your radial nerve runs the length of your arm, and is responsible for both movement and sensation. Radial neuropathy usually occurs at the back of the elbow, and can present itself with many of the common symptoms of neuropathy such as tingling, loss of sensation, weakness and reduced muscle control (in this case, often difficulty in turning your palm upwards with your elbow extended).

A number of palsies affect the radial nerve, such as:

  • “Saturday night palsy” where your radial nerve is compressed in your upper arm by falling asleep in a position where pressure is exerted on it by either furniture or a bed partner
  • “Crutch palsy”, where your nerve is pinched by poorly-fitted crutches
  • Tarsal Tunnel at the foot and Cubital Tunnel at the elbow.

Two main conditions affect the ulnar nerve: Guyon’s canal syndrome and cubital tunnel syndrome. Guyon’s canal syndrome is almost exactly the same in symptoms as carpal tunnel syndrome (pain and tingling in the palm and first three fingers), but involves a completely different nerve. Guyon’s canal syndrome is caused by pressure on your wrists, often by resting them at a desk or workstation, and is frequently experienced by cyclists due to pressure from the handlebars.

Nearly everyone has experienced cubital tunnel syndrome: it’s the “dead arm” sensation we’ve all felt when we wake up after sleeping on top of our arm! Sleeping with your arm folded up compresses the ulnar nerve at your shoulder, causing it to effectively “cut off” feeling to your arm. As you probably know from experience, this sensation is unsettling but temporary.

Diagnosis for all compression neuropathies is fairly straight forward. First, we will examine your arms for signs of neuropathy, and will likely ask you to perform several demonstrations of dexterity.  If  we suspect you may have an underlying condition, nerve (EMG/NCVs) or blood tests may be recommended. To pinpoint the specific location of a compression, we may also suggest MRI or x-ray.

Similar to carpal tunnel syndrome, most cases of compression neuropathy are mild. Treatment for these mild cases and commonly ice, rest, and a change in habits of motion or stress that are causing the symptoms. For more severe cases, possibly anti-inflammatories, and in extreme cases, a surgical solution is sometimes justified.

If you suffer from a compression neuropathy or have questions about this or any other kind of neuropathy, let us help! Contact us by calling the number at the top of the page and we can answer your questions.

Don’t wait! The sooner and accurate diagnosis is made, the more options for treatment you will have.

Do you or someone you know suffer from CTS? Join the conversation HERE!

 

References:

http://www.mdguidelines.com/neuropathy-of-radial-nerve-entrapment
http://emedicine.medscape.com/article/1285531-overview
http://emedicine.medscape.com/article/1244885-overview
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2599973/?tool=pmcentrez

 

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Chronic Pain Answers?

 How To Prevent Acute Pain from Becoming Chronic Pain

Right now, this is a staggering statistic: one fourth of the population in United States suffers from some form of chronic pain. Unlike acute or short-term pain, chronic pain is difficult to treat requiring much more effort, resources, and is more expense than acute pain.

Even more amazing is that of these hundred million plus people a substantial number of people suffer from pain related to neuropathy, shingles, and other nerve related painful disorders or neuralgias. All of these belong to the family of chronic conditions called neuropathic pain.

But why is this? There are no simple answers. Bad things do happen to good people every day.

But two largely preventable causes of neuropathy and related conditions do stand out.

The first is that as a society, we pay less attention to our health on the whole than ever before. This of course is a lifestyle issue that we address here every single day.

The other issue, which is better known, is the failure of both patients and their professionals to manage acute pain correctly.

You see, pain that accompanies largely correctable causes that does not go away in a reasonable period of time can turn into the menace called chronic pain.

But there are some simple things that you can do that will prevent acute pains from becoming chronic.

The most important thing is to learn to treat new symptoms seriously. A good rule of thumb is to never ignore anything that persists more than two days or keeps you awake at night.

This will only serve to heighten the possible risk of developing a chronic or much more serious underlying condition. These can also be the signs that infection, inflammation, or other serious process is at work.

One other very important point that could prevent many acute pain cases from turning chronic,

Be sure that any injuries, accidents and any acute illness is treated appropriately.This often means early and active intervention on both the part of yourself and your healthcare professionals.

As inconvenient and time-consuming as this may sometimes be to treat acute health problems, it’s imperative that we in healthcare get the message out.

Initiating good early treatment, diagnostics and appropriate home care programs could save many from chronic pain and all the disability and life disruption that it brings with it.

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

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Why Carb Control Can Help Neuropathy, Fibromyalgia, and Many Forms of Chronic Pain

Carrying excess body fat can elevate blood sugars and triglycerides over time. Even mildly elevated blood sugars can cause some of these sugars to attach to protein molecules, causing chronic pain.

As a regular reader of these posts, you understand—in part, at least—the importance of controlling carbohydrates in our diets.

There are two forms of carbohydrates. Simple carbohydrates include things like refined sugar, which is commonly contained in cookies, cakes, sodas, ice cream, etc. You probably also know that these items are forbidden on the NeuropathyDR Diet Plan!

There are also complex carbohydrates. Complex carbohydrates are manly starches like those found in fruits, vegetables, and grains.

The most dangerous part of high carbohydrate consumption is that it simply causes us to gain weight unnecessarily. The mechanism by which this happens is relatively complex.

In a nutshell, high carbohydrate consumption causes our bodies to produce excess insulin. Production of extra insulin actually causes a number of things to occur, but the most important is lowering of blood sugar by driving excess calories into fat cells.

This is how excess carbohydrates in our diet causes us to gain weight, seemingly very rapidly.

Another factor which many patients are unaware of is carrying excess body fat can elevate blood sugars and triglycerides over time. Even mildly elevated blood sugars can cause some of these sugars to attach to protein molecules. This is responsible for making us feel very stiff and sore.

This also makes it more difficult for our bodies to regulate insulin levels.

Of course, this response is dramatically altered in patients who are diabetic, creating all types of dangerous health effects, including eye disease, kidney disease, and of course peripheral neuropathy and other forms of chronic pain.

The good news is, pre-diabetes and borderline diabetes can often be controlled—and sometimes reversed—by improving the quality of diet.

The sooner we spring into action, the better our chances of impacting our current and future health.

There are, however, two circumstances in which higher carbohydrate consumption maybe needed.

Number one, is if you take insulin. If you take insulin, you need to know that changing your diet, and certain dietary supplementation, especially with thiamine or vitamin B1, can influence your blood sugar and insulin requirements. That’s why need to work very carefully with prescribing healthcare professionals.

Also, if you are an athlete in training, you will need to consume more carbohydrates than average. To avoid excess weight gain, avoid overeating, and emphasize the complex carbohydrates, such as those contained in fruit and vegetables, as opposed to simple sugars.

Also try to confine higher carbohydrate consumption to within one hour before, and perhaps after, strenuous physical activity.

 

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

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The Best Pain Control

For the best pain control, first your clinician must make an accurate assessment of the type of pain and likely causes.

Anybody who suffers from neuropathy and it’s related forms of chronic pain such as shingles, pinched nerves in the spine, or even spinal stenosis understands what a challenge finding the best pain control can be.

But what too many physicians and patients very often fail to understand is that early and active intervention to make a dramatic difference in patient outcome.

Let’s take for example back pain. It is been known for years that under-treated acute back pain can lead to prolonged episodes of pain and disability.

Neuropathy is often times the same because of early on the symptoms are minimized or blown off by both patients and doctors alike.

One thing that even too many physicians fail to understand is that different body parts generate different pain signals and this requires often times multiple and even separate forms of treatment.

For example the pain that is produced when a nerve is damaged is distinctly different from the pain from Norcott scraper, even a surgical scar.

Because these are two different problems, they often times need to be treated differently.

One of the key things to understand about neuropathic pain is that it does often respond well to various forms of electric nerve stimulation. This is why so many find relief with our NDGen at home and in the clinic.

By contrast, pain due to bruises, scars, and cuts etc. Do not always respond to direct neurostim (nerve stimulation) and other treatment modalities, such as ultrasound and laser maybe much more effective.

So this is why it’s very important that your clinician make an accurate assessment as to the type of pain you may have and what the likely causes actually are for best pain control.

As we said before the longer a pain pattern sets in the more difficult it becomes to treat.

This is why we strongly recommend active and early intervention especially in painful disorders like neuropathy, shingles and even acute back pain.

The longer you wait or put off the appropriate treatment the more difficult it will become to manage and find the best pain control.

In reality, far more difficult than it needs to be.

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

 

 

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