What Is the Treatment for Diabetic Neuropathy?

  • Medical Author:
    Ruchi Mathur, MD, FRCP(C)

    Ruchi Mathur, MD, FRCP(C) is an Attending Physician with the Division of Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism and Associate Director of Clinical Research, Recruitment and Phenotyping with the Center for Androgen Related Disorders, Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center.

  • Medical Editor: Melissa Conrad Stöppler, MD
    Melissa Conrad Stöppler, MD

    Melissa Conrad Stöppler, MD

    Melissa Conrad Stöppler, MD, is a U.S. board-certified Anatomic Pathologist with subspecialty training in the fields of Experimental and Molecular Pathology. Dr. Stöppler's educational background includes a BA with Highest Distinction from the University of Virginia and an MD from the University of North Carolina. She completed residency training in Anatomic Pathology at Georgetown University followed by subspecialty fellowship training in molecular diagnostics and experimental pathology.

Ask the experts

I have diabetic neuropathy all over my body (legs, feet, skin is very sensitive to temperature and clothing). Anything touching my skin feels like sandpaper, and temperature changes cause me to have the shakes and severe pain. The pain medication I have been using isn't working. What are treatment options for a patient with diabetic neuropathy?

Doctor's response

There are newer medications on the market that may be of benefit called duloxetine (Cymbalta) and Lyrica. You should speak with your doctor about the possibility of trying these agents either alone or in combination with other medication. I would also suggest having a referral to a neurologist for a full evaluation to make certain there is nothing else exacerbating your condition (for example, underlying never disorders, sciatica, etc) and perhaps consider getting an evaluation to look at the blood circulation in the legs. Claudication (an intermittent, cramping pain in the legs that occurs with walking that is related to poor blood circulation) can exacerbate neuropathic pain.

Medically reviewed by John A. Daller, MD; American Board of Surgery with subspecialty certification in surgical critical care


Diabetic Neuropathy

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Reviewed on 7/25/2017