This painful condition results from damage to the peripheral nervous system – the nerves that travel from the spinal cord to the limbs and organs. The most common cause of peripheral nerve damage is diabetes, but lupus, rheumatoid arthritis, chronic poor blood flow, thyroid problems and other conditions can also contribute to peripheral neuropathy.
Symptoms can include pain, tingling, numbness, and muscle weakness. Some people may experience digestive problems, urinary problems, sexual problems and excessive sweating.
Tests to check for peripheral neuropathy include EMG (electromyography), nerve conduction studies, and nerve biopsies.