Already tasked with a burdensome regimen of therapy for nerve damage, some patients may just be looking for simpler relief.
Janice Wiesman, MD, has a simple question for patients uncertain as to whether they want to treat neuropathy symptoms without medicine.
The adjunct assistant professor of Neurology at the Boston University School of Medicine and the author of Peripheral Neuropathy: What It Is and What You Can Do to Feel Better told MD Magazine that she understands some patients may not be interested in supplemental care. Already tasked with a burdensome regimen of therapy for nerve damage, some patients may just be looking for simpler relief.
So when a patient gauges Wiesman on symptomatic treatment — means to relieve pain and tingling resulting from the nerve damage — she asks them if the pain is truly making them crazy.
“I just say, ‘Are these symptoms making you crazy? Crazy enough that you would want to try something you would have to take every day to take care of the pain?’,” Wiesman said. “And if they say yes, we have a discussion.”
That discussion can be a lengthy one, as the field of non-medicine neuropathy symptom relief is deep and varied in results. Prior presenting a lecture on the subject at the 70th annual meeting of the American Academy of Neurology (AAN) in Los Angeles, CA, Wiesman shared some of the most common non-opioid options she shares with her patients.
Here they are, in her words:
Another crucial conversation Wiesman covers with patients is the limitations of these treatments. She emphasized that treating symptoms starts and ends there. The benefit is that comes at the call of the patient.
“My takeaway message is that this is just a symptomatic treatment,” Wiesman said. “This is something they can decide they want, it’s something they can control, and it’s something they can get good relief from without adding another pill to their regimen.”
The American Academy of Neurology Annual Meeting (AAN) delivers the latest developments in science, education, and networking, and further coverage can be found at MD Magazine‘s new sister site, NeurologyLive.
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