If you’ve been diagnosed with one or more of these sexually transmitted diseases:
• Genital Herpes (or any one of the large number of herpes-simplex viruses)
• Hepatitis B and D
• HPV (Human papillomavirus infection)
Yes, we said one or more.
Because of the way sexually transmitted diseases (STD’s) are spread, it’s not uncommon to be infected with more than one STD through a single encounter. For example, about half of the people who are infected in a single sexual encounter with Chlamydia are also infected with gonorrhea at the same time.
If you’ve been diagnosed with an STD and you’re now experiencing
• Extreme fatigue
• Painful, swollen joints
• Swelling in your feet, legs or hands
You may have yet another symptom from your STD to worry about – any of these diseases can cause peripheral neuropathy.
If it does, the pain, swelling or even loss of sensation won’t go away on its own. And more than just causing pain, it can be deadly if the wrong nerves are affected.
How Does A Sexually Transmitted Disease Cause Peripheral Neuropathy?
Many of these STD’s are caused by viruses or bacteria. Viruses and bacteria can attack nerve tissue and severely damage sensory nerves. If those nerves are damaged, you’re going to feel the pain, quickly.
The virus that causes HIV, in particular, can cause extensive damage to the peripheral nerves. Often, the progression of the disease can actually be tracked according to the specific type of neuropathy the patient develops. Painful polyneuropathy affecting the feet and hands can be one of first clinical signs of HIV infection.
Any of these viral or bacterial disorders can cause indirect nerve damage. Those damaged nerves lead to peripheral neuropathy.
Exactly What Is Peripheral Neuropathy?
Peripheral neuropathy is a condition that develops when the peripheral nervous system is damaged by a condition like diabetes, cancer or a sexually transmitted disease. When these nerves are damaged, they no longer communicate properly and all the bodily functions they govern are disrupted.
Depending upon which nerves are damaged and the functions they serve, you can develop serious or even life threatening symptoms.
Why Should You Worry About Peripheral Neuropathy?
After all, you’ve already received a devastating diagnosis when you found out you had a sexually transmitted disease. Aside from the physical discomfort, as a responsible partner you have to alter how you handle the most intimate aspect of your life.
But you should worry about peripheral neuropathy because you could develop serious problems.
If your peripheral neuropathy affects the autonomic nervous system, you could develop
• Blood pressure problems
• Heart rate issues
• Bladder or bowel control issues
• Difficulty swallowing because your esophagus doesn’t function properly
• Heart burn
• Inability to feel sensation in your hands and feet
Beyond being uncomfortable, any of these conditions can cause serious health issues; some can even be fatal.
How Can You Protect Yourself?
If you suspect you have a sexually transmitted disease, get medical treatment immediately. If you’re sexually active and have more than one partner, you might want to be tested even if you don’t have any of the common STD symptoms. Often patients, especially women, are infected and have no symptoms. Getting tested and finding out early on if you’re infected will make it less likely that you’ll develop peripheral neuropathy and nerve damage.
If you know you have a sexually transmitted disease and you’ve developed any of the peripheral neuropathy symptoms we mentioned earlier, one of the smartest things you can do for yourself to head off potential problems is to consult a specialist who treats neuropathy and will recognize problems quickly and act to resolve them. A great place to start is with your local NeuropathyDR® clinician. Your NeuropathyDR® specialist follows a very specific protocol specifically designed to minimize nerve damage from peripheral neuropathy.
Contact us today for information on the best course of treatment to make sure that once your sexually transmitted disease is cured or under control, you won’t carry the burden of nerve damage from peripheral neuropathy.
For more information on coping with peripheral neuropathy, get your Free E-Book and subscription to the Weekly Ezine “Beating Neuropathy” at http://neuropathydr.com.