What kind of doctor should you use for neuropathy? Do you wait until your endocrinologist tells you to see a neurologist or do you see one on your own?
I made the mistake of dropping my endo and decided to save some time and money by letting my geriatric doctor whose physician's assistant's father was diabetic and therefore knew a lot about it, take care of me. Wrong. He didn't know that much about neuropathy and he moved to Las Vegas!!! I was unaware of this until about a month ago.
I've had a lot of back problems and now leg problems. Had an MRI, X-rays. I do have a slipped vertebrae, bulging disks, scoliosis, and a lot of arthritis. But. I also have neuropathy in my feet and I'm beginning to suspect the burning leg pain in the calf of my leg is not from all those things, but rather, it could be neuropathy. Now the right leg is giving me a fit.
The geriatric doctor has not even been checking my neuropathy and I feel this is outside his field of expertise. I think I will start with a new endo and go from there. Any advice? Yes. I'm watching my blood sugars.
first find a good endo then yes you can go to a neurologist by yourself unless you need to be recommended to one
I have never seen an endo. My GP was trained overseas and has a very good and realistic view of D. He sent me to a neurologist for testing because he thought my problem had more to do with CTS than neuropathy. He was wrong and the neurologist gave me a couple exercises to help my hand and feet. But as to treatment, not much to be done. The only thing he said "could" make a difference is maintaining normal BG. And that has worked. Very slowly, but it does work. I also take r-ala which he agreed with. It also does help.
So, my answer to your question is that YOU are the best therapist for neuropathy. I have never seen any information about any kind of treatment for it other than pain management. Everything I have found outside of pain management is BG control and supplements like r-ala and B vitamins. With your other issues a neurologist can test and better identify what is actually going on. It makes sense to do that first in order to treat the right problem.
I have severe peripheral neuropathy, autonomic neuropathy, and for a year or so was suffering from diabetic amyotrophic neuropathy. The latter caused me to lose 40 pounds of leg muscle and put me in a wheelchair. It was only when I was in a wheelchair that I was allowed at Kaiser to see a neurologist. The first time I saw him he made the diagnosis and said there was nothing he could do. The second time, about a year later, he seemed shocked that I was still alive, let alone doing better. I have never been allowed to see an endocrinologist at Kaiser because I brought my A1C down below 5.5 three months after I was diagnosed (it started at 9). By their criteria, my blood sugar is too low for me to see an endo because all an endo does is help you lower your blood sugar. So, I'm pretty much stuck with my primary care physician. I would be happier with my veterinarian, at least he's also diabetic and has some knowledge about the disease. Outside of Kaiser, I don't know who you see about neuropathy, but I suspect it isn't an endo. I have a friend who is not diabetic who suffers from neuropathy and she sees a neurologist who has also told her there is nothing to be done. I will be watching to see what kind of solution you come up with, maybe I can learn from your experience.
Hi Jan. Congrats on you A1c. I've been able to keep mine at 5.5 as well. I read a Johns Hopkins study that says it takes 2 years of solid control to begin reversing the affects of PN. I have personally found that to be true.How about you? How much improvement have you seen over what length of time? I also have autonomic and it is improving as well. This all moves at a glacier's pace, but itis going in the right direction.
Thanks for the reply. What is CTS? You are right Nothing can be done about neuropathy except manage the pain. Neuropathy showed up in my feet and legs not long after I was diagnosed with type 2 and got my blood sugar under control. I took neurontin for a while but the side effects scared me so I read on and discovered walking helped. I ended up walking or riding a bike for two miles after every meal and was able to stop taking any meds for diabetes for about 8 years. The pain went away and all I had was tingly, numb feet for 15 years now. I did go on insulin 7 or 8 years ago because I moved and did not have room for my stationery bike. Earlier this year, when the pain began to show itself in the calf of one of my legs, I had forgotten all about what it was like that first year I was diabetic. Now I can feel the tingly, burning sensation coming up from my feet and now it's in both legs. A little problem with incontinence and sometimes getting dizzy when I get out of my car. The PE thought drinking more water would cure that. I did not. Drinking a lot of water is something I never fell for. So. Thanks to you and some others, I am less anxious about this. I will talk to my primary doc and see what he thinks about me seeing a neurologist for an accurate diagnosis.
It does bother me a little that he never checks my thyroid (other than blood tests); does not look at my feet; does not check my blood pressure at my ankles. I think I stood up for that. Does not check the feeling in my feet. I doubt he knows he should be doing this for a diabetic. But, if nothing can be done about neuropathy, that's kind of window dressing, is it not?