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    Suggest treatment for peripheral neuropathy

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Posted on Tue, 8 Aug 2017 in Brain and Spine
Question: I am an Athlete for sure, not a diabetic, I have Peripheral Neuropathy, and intermittent balance problems, sometimes I could not pass a Sobriety test., but its intermittent. I am very very healthy, great diet, lifelong national handball player, sometimes when I am on the court, my lower legs are not right...so need some help., I am taking 5 vitamins...
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Answered by Dr. Olsi Taka 1 hour later
Brief Answer:
Read below.

Detailed Answer:
I read your question carefully and I understand your concern, especially given the active and healthy lifestyle you lead.

However it is not clear what steps have you taken to confirm the diagnosis of neuropathy and to determine its cause, have you seen a neurologist, have you taken any tests? Peripheral neuropathy means simply nerve damage, it doesn't say much about the origin. Causes apart from diabetes can be many like metabolic and hormonal changes, rheumatological conditions, infections, inflammation of blood vessels, paraneoplastic syndromes etc. In 25% the cause can't be found but before reaching to that conclusion tests are needed and if a cause is found that should be addressed.
Otherwise apart from correcting the source the available options are limited. They consist mainly in symptomatic treatment, treating pain with medication like Gabapentin which you do not like. Apart from vitamins B1, B6, B12, the only other supplements which can be tried is alpha-lipoic acid, an antioxidant, but their efficacy is limited. Some patients report improvement with acupuncture but there are not many real studies to confirm that.

I remain at your disposal for other questions, possibly with more info on diagnostics steps taken.
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar
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Follow up: Dr. Olsi Taka 5 hours later
Thank you Dr. Taka., I won't take much of your time here, I appreciate your note a lot. I have started taking all the recommended vitamins, and will take them on schedule for a few months. I have not seen a neurologist yet, but will mark it as a important thing to do. I have one symptom that is very very strange...when I feel the ataxia happen, and its intermittent, this is strange., As I am standing, erect at a counter or something, my lower leg and foot will involuntarily come up on its own, without me willing it too, its like a kinda levitates, unreal, again its intermittent, thank goodness it does not happen daily, it is very unusual Dr. Have you ever encountered that symptom ? Believe me, I am 74, but not the regular 74, I am a former U.S. Army Green Beret, Conditioned, Fit as can be. 5-10 -178, I take no prescribed meds. Thank you so much. XXXXXXX XXXX I am a 35 yr, career, XXXX
doctor
Answered by Dr. Olsi Taka 17 hours later
Brief Answer:
Possible dystonia

Detailed Answer:
Hello again. Sorry for answering a little lat but your follow-up question came just as I was about to start work at the hospital and couldn't answer till now.

Regarding that symptom that you mention, it is unusual. The only neurological symptom it might fit is that of dystonia, involuntary sustained muscle contraction of a muscle or group of muscles. Tough to be sure without observing though, perhaps neurological exam by neurologist might shed some more light. It would anyway require a full neurological exam and some tests for the cause, so I can only reinforce the recommendation to be seen by a neurologist.

Let me know if I can further assist you.
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar
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Dr. Olsi Taka

Neurologist

Practicing since :2004

Answered : 3654 Questions

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