Small Fiber Neuropathy – When Bad Circulation Causes Nerve Damage

Small Fiber Neuropathy

Often times, the causes of small fiber neuropathy are unknown or idiopathic in nature. But the condition, which is characterized by nerve damage to the fibers responsible for autonomous actions within the body are damaged, can often be a result of diabetes possibly as a result of poor circulation which can occur with the disease, although this is speculative and the relationship between diabetes and nerve damage is still largely unknown, according to WebMD. Small fiber neuropathy is a condition that is part of a larger common condition known as peripheral neuropathy.

Peripheral neuropathy is a condition that is caused from illness, infection, or injury most commonly and results in damage to nerves, as explained by Mayo Clinic. The condition affects multiple types of nerves within the body, including those that control heart rate and help keep blood pressure regulated. When these nerves are damaged, it is possible for circulation to be adversely affected.

In no condition is this more evident than in the case of diabetic neuropathy, where nerve damage that results in decreased blood flow can be so extreme that it can result in serious tissue damage that can lead to serious consequences including the loss of limbs via amputation due to tissue death and gangrene. Diabetes is one of the most common poor circulation causes and it most often affects the lower extremities including the feet and the legs, where circulation efforts are already challenged as a result of the natural force of gravity and the body’s monumental task of getting blood from this area back up to the heart. Therefore, poor circulation in toes and feet are serious concerns for diabetics, who may encounter worse symptoms than those who encounter circulatory problems in this area from other causes. Small fiber neuropathy is common in diabetics and this preexisting condition can be one of the most prevalent precursors for the fiber affecting disease.

Cold hands and feet are most often related to Raynaud’s disease, a condition that affects the blood vessels in the hands and fingers. Symptoms of Raynaud’s include color changes to the hands and fingers with them changing to blue from white in response to certain stimuli like exposure to cold and stress as well. But, it is possible that cold hands and feet may also be attributed to circulatory problems as well. And, neuropathy can be a cause of circulatory problems when the nerves that affect the body’s blood pumping system are affected.

Hand circulation can be impacted by small fiber neuropathy, but it is also potentially related to certain conditions such as carpal tunnel syndrome. This condition is related to the swelling of membranes that enclose the tendons in the hand which can put pressure on the nerves that assist in circulatory function. But, the symptoms of small fiber neuropathy can mimic those that are encountered when a decrease in hand circulation is present such as pain, tingling and numbness occurring as a result of poor circulation in fingers and the hand.

Unfortunately, because all of the causes of the small fiber affecting neuropathy are not known, treatment for the condition is often difficult when they cannot be pinpointed, according to Wikipedia. In the cases where the source appears to be idiopathic in nature, the only viable solutions for treatment are the management of symptoms to reduce the sensations of pain, tingling and numbness that can be encountered in the affected areas.