Peripheral Neuropathy is a condition associated with peripheral nerve damage, commonly due to diabetes, vitamin deficiencies, shingles, trauma or following a stroke. Other causes include systemic disease or some cancer therapies. Typically, the pain is neuropathic, that is sharp or stinging and associated with abnormal sensation including intolerance to light contact (allodynia) or an abnormally high sensitivity to pain (hyperalgesia).
The diagnosis is with history, examination and investigations such as blood tests or nerve conduction studies if required.
Treatment: there are a range of drugs that reduce and control neuropathic pains such as medication originally intended as antidepressants and antiepileptics. These drugs are often prescribed in appropriate combinations. Topical prescription therapy, acupuncture, TENs and nerve root or sympathetic nerve injections may also be beneficial.