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Paresthesia

AMBULATORY CARE:

Paresthesia

is numbness, tingling, or burning. It can happen in any part of your body, but usually occurs in your legs, feet, arms, or hands.

Common signs and symptoms:

  • No feeling in the affected area
  • A feeling of pins and needles
  • An electric shock feeling
  • Heaviness
  • Trouble moving the affected area
  • A feeling that something is crawling under your skin
  • A feeling of burning or of cold in the affected area

Seek care immediately if:

  • You have severe pain along with numbness and tingling.
  • Your legs suddenly become cold. You have trouble moving your legs, and they ache.
  • You have increased weakness in a part of your body.
  • You have uncontrolled movements.

Contact your healthcare provider if:

  • Your symptoms do not improve.
  • You have symptoms in more than one part of your body.
  • You have questions or concerns about your condition or care.

Treatment

will depend on what is causing your paresthesia. You may need to increase the amount of vitamin B in your blood. Your healthcare provider may change or stop a medicine you are taking that is causing your symptoms. Permanent paresthesia may be helped with nerve medicine. If you have diabetes, your healthcare provider or diabetes specialist can help you control your blood sugar levels. Your provider may recommend a splint or surgery if you have paresthesia caused by carpal tunnel syndrome.

Manage paresthesia:

  • Protect the area from injury. You may injure or burn yourself if you lose feeling in the area. Be careful when you touch anything that could be hot. Wear sturdy shoes to protect your feet. Ask about other ways to protect yourself.
  • Go to physical or occupational therapy if directed. Your provider may recommend therapy if you have a condition such as carpal tunnel syndrome. A physical therapist can teach you exercises to help strengthen the area or increase your ability to move it. An occupational therapist can help you find new ways to do your daily activities.
  • Manage health conditions that can cause paresthesia. Work with your diabetes specialist if you have uncontrolled diabetes. A dietitian or your healthcare provider can help you create a meal plan if you have low vitamin B levels. Your provider can help you manage your health if you have multiple sclerosis or you had a stroke. It is important to manage health conditions to stop paresthesia or prevent it from getting worse.

Follow up with your healthcare provider or neurologist as directed:

Your healthcare provider may refer you to a specialist. Write down your questions so you remember to ask them during your visits.

Ā© Copyright IBM Corporation 2018 Information is for End User's use only and may not be sold, redistributed or otherwise used for commercial purposes. All illustrations and images included in CareNotesĀ® are the copyrighted property of A.D.A.M., Inc. or IBM Watson Health

The above information is an educational aid only. It is not intended as medical advice for individual conditions or treatments. Talk to your doctor, nurse or pharmacist before following any medical regimen to see if it is safe and effective for you.

Further information

Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.

Learn more about Paresthesia (Ambulatory Care)

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