Diabetic nerve pain is different than a muscle ache or sprained ankle
(BPT) - The prevalence of diabetes continues to increase significantly, and is expected to affect 53.1 million Americans by 2025, an increase of 64 percent from 2010. One of the most common complications of diabetes is diabetic peripheral neuropathy (DPN), a form of nerve damage. More than one in five people with diabetes experiences painful DPN, also known as diabetic nerve pain, as a direct result of this nerve damage. But despite its prevalence, there are many people who go untreated and do not realize the pain they are feeling is related to their diabetes.
Dorothy is one of the millions of Americans who has diabetic nerve pain. Dorothy was a nurse in the obstetrics and gynecology department of her local hospital for more than 30 years, but her diabetic nerve pain made it difficult for her to continue working with patients. “I had so much pain that I had to get off my feet and moved into a desk role instead of regularly seeing patients, which was a tough sacrifice to make,” she says. “Driving also became difficult for me since the diabetic nerve pain made my feet numb and I couldn’t feel the accelerator. Now, I have hand controls in my car, which enables me to drive and have some independence.”
Diabetic nerve pain can include the following common symptoms: burning or shooting pain, pins and needles, stabbing or jabbing pain, painful tingling, numbness or insensitivity to pain or temperature, and extreme sensitivity to touch, even light touch. These symptoms may go unmentioned during a doctor visit since many people are unaware of the connection of this pain to their diabetes.
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