Diagnosing Alcoholic Neuropathy
You may have heard of a condition related to alcoholism, so might be asking What is Korsakoff Syndrome? Your doctor will need to check you to diagnose this condition. It is important to share the history of the use of alcohol with your doctor to get an accurate diagnosis. Your doctor will need to rule out other potential causes for your symptoms.
The test, which can identify other potential causes of neuropathy, includes:
A nerve biopsy
Nerve conduction tests
Upper gastrointestinal and small bowel tests
Tests for thyroid, liver and kidney function
Complete blood count (CBC)
Blood tests can also find vitamin deficiencies associated with both the health of nerves and the use of alcohol. Your doctor may test for the following nutrients which include:
vitamin B6 and B12
biotin and pantothenic acid
vitamin E and A
Treatment for Alcoholic Neuropathy
The most important thing you can do to treat this condition is to stop drinking. The first treatment can focus on problems with alcohol use. For some people, this may require inpatient rehabilitation. Some might be able to stop using alcohol without rehab but instead with social support and/or outpatient therapy. For help with the burning question of What is Korsakoff Syndrome, visit a site like ARBD Care.
After the alcohol use has been dealt with, the doctor can focus on the neuropathy itself, an important part of this being symptom management. Nerve damage can also make it difficult for you to carry out the functions of everyday life. Nerve damage can even make injury more likely.
Each individual will have a variety of different needs. Treatment for neuropathy may involve one kind of treatment or a variety used in combination. These include:
vitamin supplements for improving nerve health such as niacin, folate, thiamine, and vitamin B6, B12, and E.
prescription pain relief such as anticonvulsants and tricyclic antidepressants
a drug for people with urinary problems
physical therapy to assist with any atrophy of the muscles
orthopaedic equipment to stabilize limb movement
safety gear, such as footwear for stabilizing, in order to prevent injury
Special stockings for your legs to prevent dizziness
The Outlook for Alcoholic Neuropathy
Nerve damage from this condition is usually permanent. Your symptoms will get worse if you do not stop drinking. This could lead to increase risk from chronic illness, disability and damage to the limbs. However, there is hope as if caught early on, the damage from alcoholic neuropathy can be minimalised. Avoiding alcohol and improving your diet can sometimes lead to a moderate to full recovery.