Diabetic neuropathy is one of the debilitating complications of diabetes that is present in almost 28% newly diagnosed people with diabetes. It is a progressive nerve condition that starts with tingling sensation along with other symptoms. This condition needs prompt diagnosis along with management in order to avoid complications.
Diabetes and feet – Diagnosis of diabetic neuropathy
Diabetic neuropathy is a very common diabetes complication that is exacerbated with smoking. This condition is caused due to the damage of the nerves because of chronic high blood sugar levels. Injury to the peripheral nerves is responsible for peripheral diabetic neuropathy. It is this condition that affects the feet mostly.
People who experience the symptoms of diabetic neuropathy like numbness, tingling, and pinprick sensations need to consult a diabetes doctor in order to come to a diagnosis of diabetic neuropathy. Doctors review the patient’s past medical history, their current fasting and postprandial blood sugar levels, HBA1c, and other clinical parameters and then order certain diagnostic tests.
Diagnostic tests for diabetic neuropathy
- Physical examination
- Nerve conduction velocity test
- Electromyography (EMG)
- Blood tests for evaluating vitamin deficiencies
- Thyroid function test
- Quantitative sensory scoring
- Nerve biopsy
- Spinal tap
- MRI of the affected area
Based on the results of the tests, diabetic neuropathy is diagnosed and a proper treatment plan is provided by a diabetes doctor and a podiatrist for foot care in diabetes.