Alcoholic Neuropathy Treatment & Management: Rehabilitation Program, Medical Issues Complications, Surgical Intervention

Nội dung bài viết
Nội dung bài viết

Guillain-Barré syndrome (GBS) is an autoimmune disease that typically occurs after illness, infection, or vaccination. The immune system mistakenly attacks the nerve cells of the peripheral nervous system, which controls muscle movements and your body’s sense of touch. GBS causes muscle weakness, numbness, and pain; in more severe cases, it can cause temporary paralysis as well as difficulty breathing and swallowing. The main way that GBS is diagnosed is with a physical exam, especially one focused on symptoms related to the nervous system. After taking a medical history and asking you about your symptoms, a healthcare provider will assess your muscle strength and reflexes, and may ask about any recent illnesses or vaccinations.

neuropathy alcohol treatment

The authors hypothesized that vitamins B6 and B12 might have competed with the effects of vitamin B1 in the Milgamma-N group [97]. In another small Russian study, 14 chronic alcoholic men with polyneuropathy were given 450 mg benfotiamine daily for 2 weeks, followed by 300 mg daily for an additional 4 weeks. During the treatment the regression of neuropathy symptoms, other sensor and movement disorders were observed. The evidence of positive dynamics at peripheral and segmental nerve system level was supported by neurophysiological data.

What is peripheral neuropathy?

The demyelination is explained as the result of a slowing down (decceleration) of axoplasmic flow and a degradation of the quality of biological properties of axonal enzymes and proteins. This type of degeneration, so called ‘dying-back’, resembles Wallerian degeneration. Ethanol and its toxic degradation metabolites affect neuronal metabolism including the metabolic pathways of nucleus, lysosomes, peroxisomes, endoplasmatic reticulum and cytoplasm [21]. Alcohol enters the blood as early as 5 min after ingestion and its absorption peaks after 30–90 min. The key role in the degradation of ethanol is played by ethanol dehydrogenase and acetaldehyde dehydrogenase-two step enzymatic systems by which ethanol is converted to acetate which is further metabolized in humans.

Patients may also have a deficiency in vitamin B12 (cobalamin), affecting the axon and causing muscle weakness, sensory disturbances, and anemia. Vitamin B9 (folic acid) levels tend to be decreased, reducing the density of small and large nerve fibers. Important alcohol neuropathy in carbohydrate metabolism and neuron function, vitamin B3 (niacin) may also be decreased. Due to the breadth of the literature surrounding this topic, this review shall focus exclusively upon peripheral neuropathy, without discussing autonomic neuropathy.

Symptoms of Alcoholic Neuropathy

By Sarah Jividen, RN

Sarah Jividen, RN, BSN, is a freelance healthcare journalist and content marketing writer at Health Writing Solutions, LLC. She has over a decade of direct patient care experience working as a registered nurse specializing in neurotrauma, stroke, and the emergency room. Guillain-Barré syndrome (GBS) is an autoimmune disease that usually happens after a viral illness, vaccination, or infection with a specific bacteria called Campylobacter jejuni. Autoimmune diseases occur when the immune system mistakenly attacks healthy cells; research hasn’t determined why this happens, but autoimmune diseases often have a genetic cause or follow another illness or infection. The total number of axons was estimated directly with the physical fractionator method (Gundersen, 1986, Mayhew and Olsen, 1991).

One of the other important issues in alcoholic individuals is the source of their calorie intake. These individuals draw the majority of calories from calorie rich alcoholic beverages with low nutritive value. Chronic abuse of alcohol depletes the pool of liver proteins which are consumed for energy production and insufficient intake of proteins only worsens this imbalance. Resulting disturbances in protein and lipid metabolism lead to undernourishment which adversely influences other metabolic pathways, including those influencing the function of the nervous system. Excessive, long-term consumption of alcohol can lead to malnutrition as well as nerve damage, and both contribute to the development of alcoholic neuropathy.

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The dissection of the sciatic nerves was performed at the origin of the nerve between L5 and S1 segments to tibiofibular bifurcation. Each slice was fixed in buffered 2.5% glutaraldehyde and stored in the same fixative for subsequent dehydration and embedding in Epon resin 812. Beyond this, by definition, consuming enough alcohol to cause a “brownout,” “blackout,” hangover, or other overt brain symptomatology is evidence that the alcohol you’ve consumed is creating problems in your brain. Alcohol use disorder (or alcoholism) is also a clear issue for the brain. It has been linked to a higher risk for dementia, especially early-onset dementia in a study of 262,000 adults, as well as to smaller brain size. Talk with your primary healthcare provider to review the risks and benefits of introducing supplements into your routine.

  • However, this can still vary, so it’s best to ask your healthcare provider about what’s most likely in your case.
  • Consultation with a nutritionist may be indicated to help formulate strategies for replacement of essential nutrients in malnourished alcoholic patients.
  • Individuals with alcoholic neuropathy often make a partial or full recovery, depending on the extent and duration of their alcohol consumption.
  • The reason for better results in the benfotiamine alone group than in the Milgamma-N group, despite the fact that the benfotiamine dosage was equivalent, is not completely understood.

But if you have developed neuropathy as a result of alcohol use, it’s important to stop drinking as soon as possible. Professional and peer help through programs such as Alcoholics Anonymous or other substance abuse programs can help you reduce your alcohol consumption. Talk to your healthcare provider about the best treatment plan to start on your road to recovery. Overcoming alcohol use may not reverse the damage that has been done, but it can prevent nerve damage and other health issues from getting worse. Getting help as quickly as possible can also reduce the alcoholic neuropathy recovery time, which can vary based on the extent of a person’s nerve damage and other factors. Conversely, other recent data suggest a lower risk for dementia in people consuming a few alcoholic beverages a day.

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