Can you imagine feeling very intense pain, for a long time and that there is no apparent reason? Pain is a complex and necessary phenomenon since it is usually a warning response. But what if it was not like that? What if it appears when there really is no alarm signal? It is what is known as neuropathic pain.
What is Neuropathic Pain?
Unlike other types of pain, which are caused by some obvious damage or injury, neuropathic pain has a neurological origin, that is, it is generated directly in the nervous system which can be aggravated by an MTHFR mutation.
This means that, although apparently everything is correct, the damage is camouflaged in the nerves and is very difficult to see and, therefore, to diagnose. In fact, it can often be months since the patient begins to notice symptoms until the final diagnosis is made, but can be detected in time using an MTHFR test kit. Meanwhile, doctors have been ruling out diagnoses, usually related to injuries in other tissues or organs.
It is a disease that significantly affects the quality of lives of people who suffer from it, and 85% of patients affirms this. Also, it is usually associated with other pathologies, such as sleep disorders, anxiety, and depression.
Symptoms of Neuropathic Pain
Those who suffer, describe the pain as continuous, burning and stinging. Some people may also feel tingling, feeling stiff or asleep, and even cramping and feeling of electric shock.
It is located in a specific part of the body, such as an arm or a leg, although in some cases it can affect several areas. It is usually a chronic pain and remains with the patient for years. In addition, it mainly affects people between 45 and 65 years of age.
Why Neuropathic Pain Occurs
Pain, normally, is a warning signal sent by our brain to protect us when we are exposed to painful external stimuli, such as blows, burns, fractures, etc. What happens with neuropathic pain is that it is caused by our own nervous system, which functions abnormally and confuses normal with painful stimuli. This means that, in front of stimuli that a priori would not be annoying, such as temperature or touch, our body perceives them as painful and, therefore, pain loses its function of alertness and protection.
This malfunction of some areas of the nervous tissue can begin without apparent cause (would be the case of fibromyalgia), occur after an episode of herpes zoster (postherpetic neuralgia), as a result of diabetes (diabetic neuropathy) or, after an injury in the spinal cord. These diseases can leave sequels in the functioning of the nerves that produce neuropathic pain.