There are many basic numbers that can affect your neuropathy treatment.
One of the most important things we get to do in the neuropathy treatment clinic is to teach patients about their most important neuropathy treatment numbers.
For example, if you suffer from diabetes or metabolic syndrome do you know what your blood sugar numbers are in the morning, and after meals? Are you rechecking them 3 to 4 times per day and recording these on excel sheet or graph paper?
Likewise, do you know your blood pressure, your height and weight, your BMI or body mass index?
These numbers along with critical laboratory values such as total Vitamin D and total Cholesterol levels are important to know, and monitor. These neuropathy treatment numbers also give you a benchmark.
For example, many times when treating neuropathy patients we find vitamin D levels are too low and cholesterol levels are too high. We start treatment programs to affect both of these. Unless you have your baseline numbers, you won’t know how effective your treatment is!
In neuropathy treatment there are some other things you need to keep an eye on. Your weight is an obvious one. This is something you should check the same time each week.
Another neuropathy treatment number to know is your blood pressure, taken first seated and then immediately upon standing. Your blood pressure normally should rise a little bit (10 points) upon standing. If not, it could indicate overmedication, dehydration, or possibly the development of autonomic neuropathy.
So what I would recommend you do is to keep a safe place for all these pieces of information. It’s easier now than ever with mobile devices.
Make sure you have the capability of sharing this information with your healthcare providers. Then, you’ll be able to work together on a more effective neuropathy treatment program.
For more information on coping with neuropathy, get your Free E-Book and subscription to the Weekly Ezine “Beating Neuropathy” at https://neuropathydr.com.
Autonomic Neuropathy: More Dangerous Than You Think
If you read our articles often, you know that we usually talk about peripheral neuropathy in terms of pain and inconvenience. We usually write about quality of life, but it’s also important to know about a much more serious element: the dangers of autonomic neuropathy.
Autonomic neuropathy is the term that means damage has been done to the nerves that control the automatic functions of your body. These functions include blood pressure, heart rate, bowel and bladder emptying, and digestion. When the nerves are damaged, these functions can start to behave incorrectly. It can be dangerous and even life-threatening when this happens.
If you have symptoms of nerve damage such as:
• Numbness or tingling
• Loss of motor control
• Sexual dysfunction
• Dizziness and sweating
• Loss of hot and cold sensation
You may also have more serious damage to the nerves controlling your organs. If you think you might, see a NeuropathyDR® clinician right away! Many cases of autonomic neuropathy accompany cases of peripheral neuropathy that have more easily-noticed symptoms. With autonomic neuropathy, your body can have trouble controlling your blood pressure, might not digest food correctly, or could have problems regulating your body temperature. These conditions are dangerous!
Don’t Be Confused!
Autonomic neuropathy isn’t a disease of its own, and it’s not caused by any one thing. You can be at risk of developing nerve damage if you suffer from injuries, if you’ve had an amputation, or even if you spend long amounts of time sitting still. Most commonly, autonomic neuropathy goes along with a disease or condition, such as:
• Cancer (specifically, chemotherapy)
• HIV or AIDS
If you have any of these, you are at risk. Don’t wait until you develop symptoms; see your NeuropathyDR® clinician before symptoms start. You could have damage threatening your organs that you can’t detect yourself, but your doctor can discover. If your NeuropathyDR® doctor catches neuropathy early, it can save your life and even keep you from having troubling and dangerous symptoms.
How Will Your Doctor Know If Your Organs Are In Danger?
Well, the first source of information is you. Make sure you answer your doctor’s questions about your lifestyle, exercise, diet, habits, and so on. Be honest! NeuropathyDR® clinicians are here to help, not to judge. Volunteer any information the doctor might not know, like medication you’re taking and any symptoms like the ones above you might have.
Your doctor will take your blood pressure and inspect your extremities (especially your feet) for signs of sores, infections, or sensation problems. It is possible he will conduct an ultrasound to inspect your organs in greater detail, or run tests on specific organs, such as your bladder. These are all perfectly routine, and do not necessarily mean there is a serious problem. Don’t forget: we want to catch any problems as soon as we can!
If There Is A Problem Threatening Your Organs, Your NeuropathyDR® Treatment Center Can Help!
Your doctor will make sure you’re taken care of the best way possible. For autonomic neuropathy, this can mean a couple of different treatments used together to keep you healthy. Several kinds of medications are available which will help slow the effects of nerve damage and reduce the symptoms.
Your doctor will also instruct you on ways to make your everyday routine more conducive for living with neuropathy. You may have to adjust your diet, and certain kinds of exercise may be more dangerous to people with neuropathy. Don’t worry, though! There are still lots of great foods you’ll be encouraged to eat, and you’ll be able to keep in shape the right way with the plan you and your NeuropathyDR® clinician develop together.
There’s no absolute cure for neuropathy, but NeuropathyDR® doctors and physical therapists are trained experts when it comes to the best ways to treat its different forms and keep you safe. If you have symptoms of neuropathy, or if you suffer from one of the conditions that contribute to it, don’t wait! The earlier we catch neuropathy, the safer and happier you will be. If you aren’t already in touch with a NeuropathyDR® clinician in your area, contact us and we will be happy to help you find one.
For more information on coping with autonomic neuropathy, get your Free E-Book and subscription to the Weekly Ezine “Beating Neuropathy” at https://neuropathydr.com.
Do any of these symptoms sound familiar?
∙ Dizziness and fainting when you stand up
∙ Difficulty digesting food and feeling really full when you’ve barely eaten anything
∙ Abnormal perspiration – either sweating excessively or barely at all
∙ Intolerance for exercise – no, not that you just hate it but your heart rate
doesn’t adjust as it should
∙ Slow pupil reaction so that your eyes don’t adjust quickly to changes in light
∙ Urinary problems like difficulty starting or inability to completely empty your bladder
If they do, you could have autonomic neuropathy. Especially if you have diabetes, your immune system is compromised by chemotherapy, HIV/AIDS, Parkinson’s disease, lupus, Guillian-Barre or any other chronic medical condition.
You need to see a doctor immediately. A good place to start would be a physician well versed in diagnosing and treating nerve disease and damage, like your local NeuropathyDR® clinician.
What Is Autonomic Neuropathy?
Autonomic neuropathy in itself is not a disease. It’s a type of peripheral neuropathy that affects the nerves that control involuntary body functions like heart rate, blood pressure, digestion and perspiration. The nerves are damaged and don’t function properly leading to a break down of the signals between the brain and the parts of the body affected by the autonomic nervous system like the heart, blood vessels, digestive system and sweat glands.
That can lead to your body being unable to regulate your heart rate or your blood pressure, an inability to properly digest your food, urinary problems, even being unable to sweat in order to cool your body down when you exercise.
Often, autonomic neuropathy is caused by other diseases or medical conditions so if you suffer from
∙ Systemic lupus
∙ Parkinson’s disease
Or any number of other chronic illnesses, you stand a much higher risk of developing autonomic neuropathy. Your best course of action is not to wait until you develop symptoms. Begin a course of preventative treatment and monitoring with a NeuropathyDR® clinician to lessen your chances of developing autonomic neuropathy.
How Will My NeuropathyDR® Diagnose My Autonomic Neuropathy?
If you have diabetes, cancer, HIV/AIDs or any of the other diseases or chronic conditions that can cause autonomic neuropathy, it’s much easier to diagnose autonomic neuropathy. After all, as a specialist in nerve damage and treatment, your NeuropathyDR® is very familiar with your symptoms and the best course of treatment.
If you have symptoms of autonomic neuropathy and don’t have any of the underlying conditions, your diagnosis will be a little tougher but not impossible.
Either way, your NeuropathyDR® clinician will take a very thorough history and physical. Make sure you have a list of all your symptoms, when they began, how severe they are, what helps your symptoms or makes them worse, and any and all medications your currently take (including over the counter medications, herbal supplements or vitamins).
Be honest with your NeuropathyDR® clinician about your diet, alcohol intake, frequency of exercise, history of drug use and smoking. If you don’t tell the truth, you’re not giving your NeuropathyDR® clinician a clear picture of your physical condition. That’s like asking them to drive you from Montreal to Mexico City without a map or a GPS. You may eventually get to where you want to be, but it’s highly unlikely.
Once your history and physical are completed, your NeuropathyDR® clinician will order some tests. Depending upon your actual symptoms and which systems seem to be affected, these tests might include:
∙ Urinalysis and bladder function tests
∙ Thermoregulatory and/or QSART sweat tests
∙ Gastrointestinal tests
∙ Breathing tests
∙ Tilt-table tests (to test your heart rate and blood pressure regulation)
Once your tests are completed and your NeuropathyDR® clinician determines you have autonomic neuropathy, it’s time for treatment.
Treatment and Prognosis
NeuropathyDR® clinicians are well versed in treating all types of peripheral neuropathy, including autonomic neuropathy. They adhere to a very specialized treatment protocol that was developed specifically for patients suffering from neuropathy. That’s why their treatments have been so successful – neuropathy in all its forms is what they do.
Autonomic neuropathy is a chronic condition but it can be treated and you can do things to help relieve your symptoms.
Your NeuropathyDR® clinician will work with you and your other physicians to treat your neuropathy and manage your underlying condition. They do this through:
∙ Diet Planning and Nutritional Support
You need to give your body the nutrition it needs to heal.
If you have gastrointestinal issues caused by autonomic neuropathy, you need to make sure you’re getting enough fiber and fluids to help your body function properly.
If you have diabetes, you need to follow a diet specifically designed for diabetics and to control your blood sugar.
If your autonomic neuropathy affects your urinary system, you need to retrain your bladder. You can do this by following a schedule of when to drink and when to empty your bladder to slowly increase your bladder’s capacity.
∙ Individually Designed Exercise Programs
If you experience exercise intolerance or blood pressure problems resulting from autonomic neuropathy, you have to be every careful with your exercise program. Make sure that you don’t overexert yourself, take it slowly. Your NeuropathyDR® clinician can design an exercise program specifically for you that will allow you to exercise but won’t push you beyond what your body is capable of. And, even more importantly, they will continually monitor your progress and adjust your program as needed.
∙ Lifestyle Modifications
If your autonomic neuropathy causes dizziness when you stand up, then do it slowly and in stages. Flex your feet or grip your hands several times before you attempt to stand to increase the flow of blood to your hands and feet. Try just sitting on the side of your bed in the morning for a few minutes before you try to stand.
Change the amount and frequency of your meals if you have digestive problems.
Don’t try to do everything all at once. Decide what really needs to be done each day and do what you can. Autonomic neuropathy is a chronic disorder and living with any chronic condition requires adaptations. Your NeuropathyDR® clinician knows this all too well and will work with you to manage your level of stress and change your daily routines to help you manage your condition and your life.
All of these changes in conjunction with medications, where needed, will make it easier to live with autonomic neuropathy and lessen the chances of serious complications. Early intervention with a NeuropathyDR® clinician is still the best policy if you have any of the underlying conditions that can cause autonomic neuropathy. But if you already have symptoms, start treatment immediately.
For more information on coping with autonomic neuropathy, get your Free E-Book and subscription to the Weekly Ezine “Beating Neuropathy” at https://neuropathydr.com.
Gastric bypass surgery has brought on a whole new subset of patients who suffer from G.I. Autonomic Neuropathy.
You finally bit the bullet and had gastric bypass surgery…
Or maybe you opted for the lap band…
Everything went really well with the surgery and now you’re back home and on your way to your new life and brand new you.
You started to lose weight almost immediately and you couldn’t be happier with the results.
You knew you’d have some side effects but you really didn’t expect anything you couldn’t handle.
But you never expected:
• Nausea and/or vomiting
• Difficulty in swallowing because your esophagus no longer functions properly
• Inability to empty your stomach
None of these symptoms is pleasant. And what’s even worse is that they can last from days to weeks on end.
You knew you needed to take off the weight but it’s beginning to feel like it might not have been worth it.
They warned you about possible side effects but one they may not have mentioned could be causing one or several of your symptoms.
Your problems could be a result of Gastrointestinal or G.I. Autonomic Neuropathy.
Exactly What Does That Mean?
It means that your body is suffering from nutritional deficiencies caused by the lack of certain nutrients and vitamins. The bypass surgery or lap band procedure may have stopped your body from taking in too much food, but it also substantially reduced the amount of nutrients and vitamins you’re getting from your food.
You no longer take in enough food with the nutrition your body needs. When that happens, the body begins to break down. One of the many issues you can develop due to what is basically malnutrition is G.I. Autonomic Neuropathy. The nerves, specifically the Vagus Nerve is damaged by the lack of nutrition and it begins to malfunction. That means difficulty in digesting food, difficulty in swallowing, an inability to eliminate waste properly…
Basically an inability of the digestive system to do anything it was designed to do.
Before the advent of gastric bypass surgery and lap band procedures, most people who developed G.I. Autonomic neuropathy or other types of neuropathy were diabetics, alcoholics or they live in countries where malnutrition was common.
Now gastric bypass surgery has brought on a whole new subset of patients who suffer from G.I. Autonomic Neuropathy.
The Nutrients You Probably Lack
G.I. Autonomic Neuropathy is usually caused by deficiencies in:
• Vitamin B1 or Thiamine
• Vitamin B3
• Vitamin B6
• Vitamin B12
• Vitamin E
- Trace elements including cobalt which can cause permanent spinal cord damage
Many of the symptoms caused by your G.I. Autonomic Neuropathy can be lessened and possibly even controlled by a healthy diet and management of whatever underlying condition you have that could be contributing to your neuropathy.
What If You’re Not a Gastric Bypass Patient But You Have These Symptoms
What if you haven’t had gastric bypass or lap band surgery but you still have the symptoms we talked about above? If you have
• A history of alcohol abuse
• Hepatitis C
• Crohn’s Disease
• Celiac Disease
And you’re having the problems we discussed above contact your doctor immediately. Ask him to test to make sure that you are indeed suffering from nerve damage that could be linked to any of these causes. Once that diagnosis has been made, ask them about treatment options.
A highly skilled medical professional well versed in diagnosing and treating nerve damage is your best place to start for treatment of your G.I. Autonomic Neuropathy. * Lab testing is essential in bypass patients on a regular basis.
An excellent place to start is with a NeuropathyDR clinician. They have had great success in treating patients with your symptoms using a multipronged approach that includes:
• Care and correction for your muscular and skeletal systems
• Treatment for any underlying medical problems
• Nutrition education and diet planning
• A step by step exercise regimen
• Medication as needed or necessary
If you have a confirmed diagnosis of Gastrointestinal Autonomic Neuropathy or think you may have it, you don’t have to just live with it. In fact, just living with it could be downright dangerous due to intestinal blockages, continued malnutrition, etc.
Contact us today for information on how G.I. Autonomic Neuropathy can be treated, your suffering, Find a NeuropathyDR Clinician via office visit or Telemedicine HERE.