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[QUOTE=Ruby8;4755877]Sorry to hear about your pain and suffering Rising Parrot. One thing that may be different for Machine is that he doesn't mention any balance issues. Balance problems are related to damage to long fiber nerves, and if a person has only their small fiber nerves affected, their balance and muscle strength may be normal. I've had SFN for over 2 years (much longer if you include prediagnosis), and my balance and muscle strength aren't affected so far. I've read that people with SFN often never develop damage to their long fiber nerves. Sure hope this holds true for me, as what Rising Parrot and others with balance problems go through is even a whole lot more to deal with. Also, as to pain, my combo of Gabapentin and Cymbalta keep me pretty much pain free. Many people are reluctant to take an antidepressant for neuropathic pain because they are afraid that implies they are depressed, which they are not and don't want to be labeled that way. Cymbalta is being used to such an extent for pain these days rather than depression that someone told me that the TV commercials for Cymbalta have even changed the emphasis. People who can't tolerate Cymbalta, often find significant pain relief with different types of tricylic antidepressants. Machine, like Rising Parrot may never pin down the cause of his neuropathy (30 to 40% of neuropathies are idiopathic), but he sure should explore all possibilities before giving up on finding a cause. Hugs to both of you. - Ruby[/QUOTE]

Hi Ruby and Rising Parrot,

When my symptoms started to appear bottom-up,traversed from my arms and legs fully "asleep" when I would wake up in any position, muscle weakness and twitching was next in line for me, blurred vision,and it did affect my coordination only a bit, up until this day. The walk on glass feeling appeared when I would walk on a mere carpet. There were 3 instances where I pulled my nerve while running and walking in in the back of my leg, one time it was very serious and I couldn't walk normally for weeks.
Lack of sleep or more sleep than usual is a complete disaster for me on a regular basis, and it affects the way I think and feel. Sleeping in different positions affects the way I feel the next day, as the pressure in the back of my head relative to the surface I believe causes circulatory blockage to my brain, which follows a close symptom called "brain fog" similar to what fibromyalgia symptoms experience, this is one of the worst feelings for me, the pain I have learned to manage. I could feel my heart pulse around my body. Sometimes, I have issues with my joints, moving around helps with this. Moving around and sports in general help these symptoms, but even sports are difficult as I have alot less endurance and fade away more quickly. Skin tone was also affected as I would be more susceptible to the Sun. Light in general was also an issue, it was and still is an annoyance, as to prefer dark over light.
I can understand your feelings about medications, I was at first hesitant. As for masking the symptoms it depends on which symptoms. The weakness and loss of ability to freely walk cannot be masked. The pain can be masked with Lyrica, cymbalta and possibly a narcotic.

The diagnosis can be the hard part. A neurologist will use an EMG/NCS to look for neuropathy but it will not show up in the early stages of SFN. They may also look for loss of reflexes in the knees and ankles. A last resort is a sural nerve biopsy but they do not like to do that much anymore as you lose sensation in part of your foot.

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