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Diabetic Neuropathy

Diabetic neuropathy is a group of nerve disorders caused by diabetes. People with diabetes can develop nerve problems at any time, but the longer a person has diabetes, the greater the risk of neuropathy. This condition leads to numbness, pain, and weakness in the hands, arms, feet, and legs. Approximately 50 percent of those with diabetes have some form of neuropathy.

What Is Diabetic Neuropathy?

Diabetic neuropathy is a family of nerve disorders caused by diabetes. People with diabetes can, over time, have damage to nerves throughout the body. Diabetic neuropathy leads to numbness and sometimes pain and weakness in the:
 
  • Hands
  • Arms
  • Feet
  • Legs.
     
Problems may also occur in every organ system, including the:
 
  • Digestive tract
  • Heart
  • Sex organs.
     
People with diabetes can develop nerve problems at any time, but the longer a person has diabetes, the greater the risk of diabetic neuropathy.
 
An estimated 50 percent of those with diabetes have some form of neuropathy, but not all of those people will exhibit symptoms. The highest rates of diabetic neuropathy are among people who have had diabetes for at least 25 years.
 
Diabetic neuropathy also appears to be more common in:
 
  • People who have had problems controlling their blood glucose levels
  • Those with high levels of blood fat and blood pressure
  • Overweight people
  • People over the age of 40.
     
The most common type of diabetic neuropathy is peripheral neuropathy, also called distal symmetric neuropathy, which affects the arms and legs.
 
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Diabetic Neuropathy Information

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