11 warning signs and symptoms to watch out for with nerve damage (2023)

11 warning signs and symptoms to watch out for with nerve damage (1)

Written byDr. Ravali Neerumalla, M.B.B.S

11 warning signs and symptoms to watch out for with nerve damage (2)

Clinically reviewed byDr. Lakshmi Venkataraman, MD

Introduction to the nervous system

The nervous system includes the central and peripheral nervous systems. The central nervous system includes the brain and spinal cord. The peripheral nervous system consists of the long nerves that connect the central nervous system to parts of the body. The main function of the nervous system is to carry signals through the nerves to and from parts of the body to coordinate their proper functioning.


What types of nerves are there in the body?

  • Sensory nerves: They carry sensory information from the skin and muscles to the brain and spinal cord. Sensory input is processed in the brain, which helps to perceive sensations such as pain, touch, position, vibration and temperature sensations.
  • Motor nerves: control body movements by transmitting information from the brain and spinal cord to the muscles of the limbs and face.
  • Autonomic nerves: Control involuntary bodily functions such as digestion, heart rate, blood pressure, and temperature regulation.

What are the causes of nerve damage?

Nerve damage can occur from a variety of illnesses and include the following

11 warning signs and symptoms to watch out for with nerve damage (3)

Diabetes Mellitus:

Diabetic neuropathyit is due to nerve damage caused by diabetes. High blood sugar and triglycerides from diabetes can cause nerve damage.

(Video) Symptoms and signs of nerve damage


Autoimmune diseases:

autoimmune diseasescan cause nerve damage and cause nerve pain. autoimmune diseases such as multiple sclerosis,Myasthenia gravis, inflammatory bowel disease anddoença de Guillain-Barrécan cause nerve damage.


Cancer can cause nerve damage in several ways. They can compress the nerve or infiltrate the nerve. Cancer can cause nutritional deficiencies that can lead to nerve damage. Cancer treatments, such as radiation and chemotherapy, can damage nerves.

Trauma or Compression:

Direct trauma or compression of nerves or nerve roots (in the spinal cord) can result in nerve damage with resultant disability.


Some infections affect the nerves. Hepatitis C infection, HIV, herpes etc. can affect the nerves.

Metabolic causes:

Diabetes mellitus is one of the main causes of metabolic neuropathy. Thyroid disease, hypoglycemia, kidney failure, and alcoholic neuropathies are also metabolic neuropathies.

Drug side effects:

Chemotherapy drugs, tuberculosis drugs and HIV can cause nerve damage.


Heavy metals like mercury, lead, and arsenic can cause nerve damage if accidentally consumed.

nutritional deficiencies:

Vitamin B12, folic acid, vitamin E, B1 and B6 are important for nerves. Its deficiency can cause nerve damage.

Motor neuron disease:

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Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis is a motor neuron disease that causes progressive motor nerve damage and eventual death.


What are the symptoms and signs of nerve damage?

Nerve damage can lead to incorrect transmission of nerve signals and cause parts of the body to malfunction. Symptoms and signs of nerve injury or damage vary depending on the extent of the damage and the type of nerve affected. There are different manifestations of nerve damage. If caught early and a treatable cause found, symptoms may be alleviated.

The symptoms are due to the involvement of

  • motor nerves
  • sensory nerves or/and
  • autonomic nerves

11 warning signs and symptoms to watch out for with nerve damage (4)

The symptoms bySinnesnervThe holdings are:

  • dor: Pain due to nerve involvement is called neuropathic pain or nerve pain. It is a common symptom due to nerve injuries or damage. The pain can be sharp, stabbing or burning. Nerve pain can be sudden and sharp, like an electric shock. Its distribution occurs along the nerves and mainly at the site of injury. The course and distribution of pain can be helpful in the diagnosis.
  • Loss of sensation/numbness: sensations are due to sensory nerves, which relay sensory information to the brain. Injury or damage to sensory nerves can cause loss of sensation in this area. The location and type of lost sensation can help locate the lesion and find the cause. A common cause of peripheral sensory nerve damage is diabetes mellitus.
  • burning sensation: Nerve damage can cause a burning sensation in the affected area, which may be accompanied by pain, tingling and numbness.
  • tingling and stinging: Nerve damage can cause tingling and stinging, which may be accompanied by pain, numbness or burning.

The symptoms duemotor nerveinclude damage

  • To throw:muscle spasmsor fasciculation is an involuntary contraction and relaxation of a muscle. It is visible under the skin. Motor neuron involvement can lead to spasms. Sometimes it occurs even under normal conditions.
  • weakness or paralysis: Loss of muscle function is called weakness or paralysis.

Damage to motor nerves can lead to paralysis. The causes of paralysis are spinal cord injuries, stroke,Polio, multiple sclerosis, etc. It may be associated with sensory loss. Muscle paresis is a partial loss of function or partial paralysis. When one half of the body is paralyzed, it is called hemiplegia. When both lower limbs are paralyzed, it is called paraplegia.

  • Muscle atrophy:A decrease in muscle mass is called muscle atrophy. It may occur due to restricted movement and in bedridden patients. A partial or total fall is observed. Muscle atrophy can occur in patients with diseases such as cancer, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, kidney failure, AIDS, etc. Neurogenic muscle atrophy occurs due to nerve damage. Neurogenic atrophy is the most severe form with sudden onset. Neurogenic atrophy results from nerve injury, motor neuron disease, or infection.
  • Abnormal posture or gait: Muscle weakness and pain due to associated nerve damage can lead to gait and posture problems.

The symptoms dueindependentnerve damage

  • Bowel and bladder dysfunction: Bladder and bowel function depend on muscle and sphincter function, which are regulated by nerves. Damage to the nerves that supply the muscles and sphincters of the bladder and bowel can lead to symptoms such as diarrhea, constipation and incontinence.
  • changes in blood pressure: Changes in blood pressure occur when autonomic nerves are damaged.
  • Various symptoms -
    • somnolence
    • Excessive or less sweating
    • sexual dysfunction
    • cardiac arrhythmia
    • early satiety

Treatment of nerve damage:

Treatment to prevent further nerve damage by treating the cause includes:

  • In patients with diabetes, regular monitoring of glucose levels and treatment of diabetes is essential.
  • Treat if there is an underlying nutritional deficiency, e.g. B. B12 injections
  • Identify and treat infections that cause nerve damage.
  • Treatment of autoimmune diseases

Treatment to relieve nerve pain includes:

  • Analgesics such as paracetamol, tramadol
  • antidepressants: Tricyclic antidepressants, such as amitriptyline, help reduce pain.
  • physiotherapy
  • electrical stimulation
  • relaxation techniques

11 warning signs and symptoms to watch out for with nerve damage (5)

Tips to prevent nerve damage

  • Prevention of nerve damage plays an essential role in patients with diabetes. Below are the precautions to be taken in such patients
    • Regular glucose monitoring
    • good foot care
    • Report to physician early if symptoms are present
    • follow a gooddiabetic diet
    • stop smoking
    • Limit alcohol consumption
  • Exercise: Helps strengthen muscles
  • Keep your body weight in check
  • Avoid lifting heavy objects

11 warning signs and symptoms to watch out for with nerve damage (6)

Released April 10, 2018
Last updated on March 16, 2022

  1. Peripheral neuropathy -(https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/peripheral-neuropathie/symptoms-causes/syc-20352061)
  2. nerve damage -(https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nerve_injury)
  3. About nerve injuries -(http://www.assh.org/handcare/hand-arm-injuries/nerve)
  4. Nerve pain (neuralgia) -(https://www.healthdirect.gov.au/nerve-pain)
  5. deafness -(https://www.mayoclinic.org/symptoms/numbness/basics/causes/sym-20050938)
  6. Bladder and bowel disorders -(https://www.hopkinsmedicine.org/healthlibrary/conditions/kidney_and_urinary_system_disorders/bladder_and_bowel_dysfunction_134,113)
  7. Steps to prevent or delay nerve damage -(http://www.diabetes.org/living-with-diabetes/complications/neuropathie/steps-to-prevent-or-delay.html)
  8. Diabetic neuropathy -(https://www.niddk.nih.gov/health-information/diabetes/overview/preventing-problems/nerve-damage-diabetic-neuropathies)

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Latest publications and research on 11 alarming symptoms and signs to look out for after nerve damage

  • Effects of low-intensity external focused ultrasound on in vivo electrophysiological changes in a rodent model of common peroneal nerve injury.- Published by PubMed
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  • Review of adjuvants to local anesthetics in peripheral nerve blocks: current and future trends.- Published by PubMed
  • Reducing the likelihood of upper extremity neuropraxia during robotic-assisted laparoscopic prostatectomy: a new technique.- Published by PubMed
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