Peripheral neuropathy is one of the many symptoms of HIV infection. It can significantly affect the quality of your life.
It may even make you feel isolated and depressed. You can find ways to cope with the symptoms by seeking support.
Peer support groups and online forums can provide helpful information about how to manage your symptoms.
You should also make sure that your family and friends understand what you are going through.
Symptoms of peripheral neuropathy
Peripheral neuropathy is a condition in which your nerves become damaged and malfunction.
This may affect your feet, hands, arms and legs, and can be associated with numbness, pain and tingling.
The intensity and duration of these symptoms vary from person to person and can depend on a variety of factors, including genetics, stress, and temperature.
Peripheral neuropathy is the most common neurological complication of HIV infection.
About 30% to 60% of HIV-infected individuals will experience neuropathy.
This condition affects the peripheral nervous system and can lead to pain, numbness, tingling, and even loss of function.
It is often caused by chronic immune stimulation by HIV and may also be a side effect of antiretroviral treatment.
Clinical evaluation of HIV-infected patients will reveal whether or not they are experiencing symptoms of peripheral neuropathy.
Several tests will help to identify peripheral neuropathy, including a Total Neuropathy Score (TNS), sensory function, motor symptoms, reflexes, and pain thresholds.
In some cases, a patient may be symptom-free.
HIV-SN is one of the most common manifestations of the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV).
The symptoms of HIV-SN may be silent and may cause a lifelong disability.
It is therefore important to accurately diagnose the disease. Diagnosis is often difficult, particularly in patients who are older.
HIV-associated peripheral neuropathies have several classifications depending on the clinical presentation.
They include distal symmetrical polyneuropathy, acute inflammatory demyelinating polyneuropathy, and chronic inflammatory demyelinating polyradiculoneuropathy.
HIV-infected individuals are at an increased risk for peripheral neuropathy and age-related neuropathies.
In addition, HIV-infected individuals are at increased risk for neurotoxic effects of antiretroviral therapy.
Epidemiological studies have not been done to determine the prevalence of HIV-associated peripheral neuropathy, but data are available from case reports, series, and autopsy data.
Although early studies focused on viral load and CD4 count as risk factors, these risk factors were not predictive of peripheral neuropathy.
Researchers have called for better understanding of these factors.
Finding patterns in these factors may lead to better prevention methods.
In addition to evaluating the neuropathic symptoms, blood tests and urine tests can also check for specific health issues and medications.
These tests may also help diagnose hereditary disorders.
Peripheral neuropathy is a common HIV complication. It affects different parts of the nervous system, such as the feet and hands.
Treatment varies depending on the type and severity of the symptoms.
The risk of developing neuropathy increases with age and duration of HIV infection.
Some cases develop slowly, while others develop rapidly.
Most people don’t experience symptoms until months after infection.
However, peripheral neuropathy can be disabling, especially if it occurs without warning.
It usually affects both sides of the body and worsens at night.
If you think that you have this condition, your doctor can help you understand the symptoms and how to treat it.
Many different diseases and infections can cause peripheral neuropathy, including diabetes, Lyme disease, and herpes zoster.
Infections that damage blood vessels can also lead to neuropathy.
Certain medications and vitamin imbalances can also damage nerves.
Prevention of peripheral neuropathy from HIV is a critical part of treating HIV infection.
HIV-infected individuals should be tested for peripheral neuropathy regularly.
This screening should be done on patients of all ages and especially elderly people, who are at high risk of developing peripheral neuropathy.
People with a high plasma viral load should also be tested.
HIV-infected individuals who have a high CD4 count are at a higher risk for developing peripheral neuropathy than HIV-infected individuals with lower CD4 counts.
Researchers have called for better studies and a better understanding of risk factors.
They say that doctors should look for patterns to help them predict neuropathy early.
They can also check for specific health concerns, monitor medications, and check for hereditary disorders.
In the pre-ART era, neurological complications of HIV were considered a cluster of disorders.
Autopsies of people who died of HIV infection revealed neurological signs and symptoms, including neuropathy.
Today, more than half of HIV-infected patients suffer from neurological symptoms. Of these patients, 57% suffer from HIV-DSP, and 38% have neuropathic pain.