Peripheral nerve disorders, also called peripheral neuropathies, include more than 100 conditions that affect the way the brain — part of the central nervous system — communicates with the rest of the body — the peripheral nervous system.
The peripheral nerves control muscle contraction and provide sensation to touch, pressure, pain, and temperature. Neuropathy is disease or damage to a nerve or bundle of nerves. Peripheral nerve disorders range from single-nerve compression like carpal tunnel syndrome to body-wide peripheral neuropathy from infectious or inflammatory diseases.
The neurology team at Dignity Health Neurological Institute of Northern California is focused on providing exceptional diagnosis and treatment of peripheral nerve disorders in Sacramento and the surrounding area. Find a Doctor to receive expert care from a neurologist or neuromuscular disorder specialist near you.
Peripheral Nerve Disorders Causes
People who have a peripheral nerve disorder may have inherited a defective (mutated) gene, or they can develop the condition later in life.
Peripheral nerve disorders that develop without a family history of peripheral neuropathy have many causes, including:
- Hormone imbalances
- Nerve compression, from overuse of specific joints
- Other diseases, such as diabetes, rheumatoid arthritis or cancer
- Vitamin deficiencies
Toxins, such as certain medications (including chemotherapy), insecticides or lead, can also cause peripheral nerve disorders.
Peripheral Nerve Disorders Symptoms
Signs and symptoms can vary depending on the exact condition. Some may occur suddenly, and others develop with time. Some of the symptoms of peripheral nerve disorders include:
- Autonomic nervous system issues, such as sweating, sexual function, bowel or digestive problems, and lightheadedness
- Balance and coordination problems
- Heightened or decreased sensitivity to touch, temperature or pain
- Muscle weakness
- Numbness or tingling
- Problems controlling voluntary movements
- Stabbing, throbbing or burning pain, often in the hands and feet
- Tremor and other involuntary movements
In severe cases, a peripheral nerve disorder can lead to respiratory problems and organ failure which, ultimately, can be life threatening. Speak with a neurologist at Dignity Health for the right diagnosis.
State-of-the-Art Peripheral Nerve Disorders Treatments
The treatment and prevention options our specialists recommend depend on the type of condition involved. No matter your treatment, you can feel confident that our experienced neurologists, therapists, and other staff members are highly trained and use the latest tools and techniques. Providing you the best possible care is our priority.
Our treatment strategies include:
- Controlling pre-existing medical conditions, such as diabetes and nutritional deficiencies
- Pain medication, either over-the-counter or prescribed, to relieve symptoms
- Physical therapy to strengthen muscles and increase mobility
- Neurosurgery to relieve pressure on the affected nerves
- Transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation, which provides pain relief
Dignity Health Neurological Institute of Northern California is a leader in advanced care for peripheral nerve disorders in Sacramento, CA and the surrounding areas.