Links between diabetes and neuropathy
Diabetes: the food we eat, our body turns it into glucose or sugar and at the same time pancreas release insulin. Insulin’s function is to open all cells and allow the use of glucose for energy. When this system doesn’t work, the condition is called diabetes. Main two types of diabetes are Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes. It is a long-term disorder. Diabetes causes high or very low blood sugar levels in the body.
Neuropathy: neuropathy refers to general nerve disease or nerve malfunctions. Nerves located in any part of the body can be damaged by disease or injury. Neuropathy is classified according to location or type of affected nerves. In this single or multiple nerves are affected.
The link between diabetes and neuropathy:
Neuropathy and diabetes are closely linked together. Neuropathy with effects of diabetes is called diabetic neuropathy. Causes of neuropathy include diabetes. Diabetes is most common cause of chronic peripheral neuropathy. High blood sugar levels in the body with uncontrolled diabetes can cause nerve damage. Any kind of nerve damage that occurs in a diabetic patient is referred as diabetic neuropathy. Nerve damage is called neuropathy and diabetes can damage nerves. So, the occurrence of diabetes and neuropathy in a person at the same time is called diabetic neuropathy. High blood sugar levels can damage any nerve of the body but diabetic neuropathy mostly damages nerves located in feet and legs. Diabetic neuropathy affects urinary tract, heart, digestive system and blood vessels. Some patients experience mild symptoms but for others, it can be disabling, painful and even fatal. Diabetic neuropathy is very common and serious complication of diabetes.
Initially, diabetic neuropathy doesn’t show any symptoms. Usually, this condition develops slowly. Symptoms of diabetic neuropathy appear gradually. In the case of prolonged diabetic peripheral neuropathy patient may experience infections or injuries in extremities. In most cases first, nerve damage occur in nerves of feet causing a sensation of needles and pins in feet. Usually, symptoms vary according to the affected nerves but most common symptoms of diabetic neuropathy include touch sensitivity, excessive sweating, loss of sense of touch, walking difficulty, weak muscles, dizziness, vaginal dryness, erectile dysfunction, nausea, and indigestion etc. symptoms also depends on the type of neuropathy.
Diabetes can harm nerves of any part of the body so, on this basis, diabetic neuropathy has mainly 4 types:
Peripheral neuropathy: this is the most common type of diabetic neuropathy. It usually affects legs and feet but can also affect hands and arms.
Autonomic neuropathy: many body muscles and organs are controlled by an autonomic nervous system including sex organs, bladder, sweat glands, digestive system and cardiovascular system.
Proximal neuropathy: it is the less common form of diabetic neuropathy and also called as diabetic amyotrophic. This is more common in older adults having type 2 diabetes. It affects only one side of the body.
Focal neuropathy: it occurs when diabetes harms specific nerve or nerve group and cause weakness in the affected area. Usually, it is very painful and appears suddenly.
Diabetic neuropathy is most common in Type 2 diabetes patients. Causes of diabetic neuropathy can be high triglycerides, obesity, smoking, high blood pressure, high levels of LDLs and low levels of HDL cholesterol. It can be cured by controlling and ma nagging the blood sugar levels of the patient.