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Diabetic Neuropathy Treatment Overview

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Care Plan


First steps to consider

  • See a healthcare provider to get a diagnosis and a treatment plan.
  • Treatment usually starts with controlling blood sugar levels.
  • Do daily footcare.
  • If you’ve been diagnosed with neuropathy, see a provider if your pain worsens or you notice an open sore on your foot.
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Emergency Care

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Call 911 or go to the ER if you have any of the following symptoms:

  • You’ve had diarrhea for more than 2 days.
  • You have a wound that won’t heal.
  • You have sudden loss of vision.

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All treatments for diabetic neuropathy
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When to see a healthcare provider

If you have diabetes, you should be seeing a healthcare provider routinely to make sure you’re keeping your blood sugar levels under control. This will help prevent diabetic neuropathy from getting worse.

If you have mild numbness without much pain, you may not need to see a provider other than for your routine medical care. If you have pain or numbness that bothers you or you notice sores or wounds on your feet, you need to see a provider to make sure you are not developing an infection.

If you are already on medication for neuropathy and you are still in pain, talk to your provider about other options that you might be able to try.

Getting diagnosed

Diabetic neuropathy can often be diagnosed based on a physical exam and your symptoms. Your provider may do a nerve conduction test, which is an electrical test that measures the health of the nerves. Other tests may be needed if your provider is concerned that your symptoms are related to another condition.

What to expect from your doctor visit

Once you are diagnosed with diabetic neuropathy, your healthcare provider will review your symptoms with you to determine if treatment is needed. If your symptoms are painful, you may be prescribed medication to treat the pain. Common medications for treating nerve pain include antidepressants and anti-seizure medications. Pain killers, or opioids, are not typically prescribed as a treatment for diabetic neuropathy..

Prescription medications for diabetic neuropathy

  • Gabapentin (Neurontin)
  • Pregabalin (Lyrica)
  • Amitriptyline (Elavil)
  • Duloxetine (Cymbalta)
  • Desvenlafaxine (Pristiq)
  • Lamotrigine (Lamictal)
  • Valproic Acid (Depakote)
  • Oxcarbazepine (Trileptal)
  • Lacosamide (Vimpat)

Types of providers who treat diabetic neuropathy

  • A primary care provider can diagnose and treat diabetes and peripheral neuropathy.
  • An endocrinologist is a doctor who treats diabetes.
  • A neurologist may be needed if the neuropathy symptoms are severe.
  • A podiatrist can diagnose and treat foot specific problems.
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