Peripheral neuropathy had been associated to fibromyalgia in many ways. In fact, some suggest that it may be the root cause of fibromyalgia. But what is peripheral neuropathy and how does this affects fibro sufferers? Read on to find out.
What is Peripheral Neuropathy
Neuropathy is a disorder that is related to the nerves and could extend all throughout your body’s peripheries. Your nerve connects your body to your brain which is is responsible behind the physical sensations you feel, such as pain. A fault in this link could lead to many problems.
It is your nerves that transmit signals from your skin to your brain. Your brain will then interpret this and send a message back down to the nerves. This is the reason why you feel pain in your hands whenever you touch a something hot or sharp. You are not really feeling the pain in your hand, but the sensation of pain comes from your brain. Your brain merely relies from the signals of your hand to let you know if you are injured or hurting.
With fibromyalgia, this normal process of pain is disrupted somewhere along the way. Many experts believe that the problem lies in the central nervous system however recent studies suggest that problem could be due to small nerve impairment in the skin.
The Link Between Fibromyalgia and Small Nerve Fiber Neuropathy
The concept of pain without any obvious cause is what fibro sufferers are familiar with. Recent studies suggest that nerve damage may play a bigger role in fibromyalgia.
Two separate studies conducted in 2013 and 2015 found evidence of a condition known as small nerve fiber neuropathy (SFN) in fibromyalgia participants. SFN is also a pain disorder and shows similar symptoms to fibromyalgia such as pain, burning sensations and tenderness in the hands and feet. In SFN, patients exhibit impaired small nerve fiber function resulting in increased pain. These studies suggest that the root of fibromyalgia pain may actually be neuropathic for some.
A simple test can be done to determine if you have small nerve fiber neuropathy. This test is called punch biopsy. Thus, if you are suffering from fibromyalgia, it may be a good idea to consider taking this test. It can mean discovering treatment options for your condition.