Neuropathic/Nerve Mediated Pains
Neuropathic pain is a condition caused by injury or damage to nerves of the peripheral or central nervous system. Neuropathic pain is often described as a hot, burning, painful sensation and can have devastating effects on the individual’s quality of life. This condition can affect any part of the body.
Some of the common causes of neuropathic pain include conditions that affect nerves such as diabetes, trauma, and cancer treatment (chemotherapy).
Some of the common types of neuropathic pain conditions include:
- Diabetic neuropathy: Diabetic neuropathy is damage to the nerves in the body that develops in people with diabetes due to high blood sugar levels. The condition can causea burning or stabbing pain through your hands or feet.
- Postherpetic neuralgia: Postherpetic neuralgia is pain that occurs after an outbreak of shingles, which is caused by the chickenpox virus. The pain may last long after the shingles infection has cleared.
- Trigeminal neuralgia: Trigeminal neuralgia is a nerve disorder that causes shooting neck and facial pain, often triggered by touching the face.
- Phantom pain: Phantom painis pain that is felt in the area where a limb has been amputated.
- Carpal tunnel syndrome: Carpal tunnel syndrome is a painful disorder in which a nerve in the wrist becomes compressed, often resulting in pain in your wrist, thumb, and fingers.
- Sciatica: Sciatica refers to shooting pain in the back of the leg that occurs when there is pressure or damage to the sciatic nerve.
- Pudendal neuralgia: Pudendal neuralgia is a chronic pelvic pain caused by pudendal nerve (located in the pelvis) compression.
- Central pain syndrome:Central pain syndrome is a type of pain caused by damage to the central nervous system. This syndrome can occur after a stroke or along with other neurological diseases such as multiple sclerosis.
Neuropathic pain can also be caused by other conditions such as degenerative disc disease, spinal cord injury, post-surgical pain, and cancer.
- Relaxation therapy
- Physical and occupational therapy
- Cognitive/behavioral strategies
- Transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation (TENS)
- Topical analgesics (capsaicin, lidocaine patch 5%)
- Anticonvulsants (gabapentin, lamotrigine, pregabalin)
- Antidepressants (nortriptyline, desipramine)
- Opioids (oxycodone, tramadol)