One in four patients with diabetes will develop painful peripheral neuropathy (PDND), a chronic complication that causes nerve damage and causes severe pain in the legs, feet and hands; and cases are expected to increase by 51% by 2047.
These are the main conclusions of the survey “Neuropathic pain in patients with diabetes and unmet needs”, conducted by Viatris and in which more than 960 patients from Spain, Italy, Malaysia, Mexico and South Korea participated.
The report aims to make the symptoms of diabetic neuropathy visible and draw attention to the importance of early diagnosis and support for patients on the occasion of Pain Awareness Month.
Neuropathic pain (NP) is caused by an injury or disease of the somatosensory nervous system, which represents 20-25% of chronic pain and, despite being a common complication of diabetes, most affected patients go undiagnosed. up to 6 months. then.
In this regard, the endocrinologist and member of the Spanish Diabetes Society (SED) José Ángel Díaz Pérez emphasizes that in almost half of the cases more than one doctor is consulted to get an evaluation. “Patients with diabetic neuropathy receive advice and information about lifestyle and indications for a healthy diet,” followed by medicine, added the manager of the Spanish Diabetes Federation (FEDE), Mercedes Maderuelo, in the presentation of the report.
The surveyed patients who suffer from this pathology describe the first symptoms as irritating, constant and stabbing, and up to 80% of them are considered “extremely annoying.”
In this sense, the president of the Spanish Pain Society (SED), María Madariaga, points out that the feeling of tingling, numbness, heat or pain are the main symptoms of neuropathic pain associated with diabetes.
All experts agree on the need to see this complication of diabetes, which is derived from damage to the nervous system that can cause high levels of glucose; in addition to emphasizing that ignorance of this disease makes diagnosis and treatment difficult.