If you have painful peripheral neuropathy (weakness, numbness, and pain from nerve damage, usually in the hands and feet), you probably have a low level of vitamin D. But a new study concluded that taking a lot of vitamin D3 for a short term can improve the symptoms of neuropathy.
A low level of vitamin D is a “Fairly new topic of interest in pain,” the Vanderbilt University Medical Center wrote in 2009. A review article in Pain on “ Vitamin D and chronic pain ” had just found that we needed better evidence to conclude that vitamin D is relevant.
Pain was significantly less in the treatment group
The new study provides some of the evidence that we needed. Published online and not yet assigned to an issue of Medical Principles and Practice , the study is “ Prospective Evaluation of the Effect of Short-Term Oral Vitamin D Supplementation on Peripheral Neuropathy in Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus .” A research team from Kuwait s...
"My knee feels stiff when I sit for a long time and it hurts to get up. But, after I walk for a few minutes, the pain eases up."
"My hands are stiff in the morning or after I take a nap during the day. After I have been awake for about twenty minutes, the pain is completely gone."
"My lower back is very tight in the morning and it hurts to get out of the bed. I do a few exercises and my back seems to loosen up."
The above are just a few of the comments I hear on an almost daily basis. In osteoarthritis, joints are commonly sore, stiff, and painful after sleep or after resting them for a while. After getting up, the joints "loosen up" as they move around and are used. In the spine, the small facet joints are a common source of arthritis and back pain. The facet joints work as hinge joints similar to the hinges on a door. In a young, non-arthritic person, the joints glide smoothly over one another. However, as the joints become arthritic, they function more as a rusty hi...
Measuring stiffness in arthritic knees is not easy. Most often, doctors rely on the patient's report of stiffness. The most common way to measure stiffness is through the use of a self-report tool called the WOMAC . The WOMAC is a survey including 24 questions about pain, function, and stiffness in patients with knee osteoarthritis (KOA). In this study, physical therapists use a three-camera computerized video system to measure stiffness of the knee. Two groups of adults were tested. The first group had X-ray diagnosis of KOA and reported pain in the last month. The second (control) group were healthy adults matched by age and sex. One test was performed on each person in both groups. The test was repeated a second time within two weeks of the first test. For each trial, the person sat on an exam table in a relaxed position. The thigh was supported by the table. The knee was bent with the lower leg dangling off the table. With the person relaxed, the tester straightened the leg and then re...
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