Alcoholic Neuropathy Symptoms and Treatment

The ethanol consumption of these patients was more than 100 g day–1 for more than 10 years. The subgroup without thiamine deficiency consisted of 36 patients, while the subgroup with thiamine deficiency consisted of 28 patients. In addition, 32 patients with nonalcoholic thiamine deficiency neuropathy were also evaluated for comparison. The subgroup without thiamine deficiency, considered to be a pure form of alcoholic neuropathy, uniformly showed slowly progressive, sensory dominant symptoms. Superficial sensation, especially nociception, was predominantly impaired and painful symptoms were the primary complaint in most patients in this group.

Thus, there is an urgent need to screen the vitamin E isoforms, especially tocotrienol for evaluating clinical efficacy in patients with alcoholic neuropathy. Thus, alpha-lipoic acid may have a potential in the treatment of patients with alcoholic neuropathy. At Healthgrades, our Editorial Team works hard to develop complete, objective and meaningful health information to help people choose the right doctor, right hospital and right care. Our writers include physicians, pharmacists, and registered nurses with firsthand clinical experience.


Alcohol decreases the absorption of nutrients, such as protein and vitamin B12, causing significant deficits that affect many areas of the body, including the nerves. Alcoholic neuropathy is one of the most common but least recognizable consequences of heavy alcohol use. People with a long history of alcohol misuse might experience loss of balance, pain, tingling, weakness, or numbness after drinking alcohol. Both the toxicity of alcohol and nutritional deficiencies in those who drink heavily have been linked with nerve pain in alcoholic neuropathy. Patients with neuropathic pain may be less mobile, predisposing them to conditions such as pneumonia, deep vein thrombosis, skin breakdown, muscle atrophy and weakness, and depression. Physical therapy should be included in the treatment plan to improve flexibility, strength, and balance.

  • H and F wave latencies were not routinely reported but were found to be prolonged in those with alcohol-related peripheral neuropathy in studies that did [4, 67].
  • From 1984 to 1986, Mr. Collier worked as a Clinical Instructor for the Care Units at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles and then served as the Nurse Manager of the Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation Center also at Cedars Sinai from 1986 to 1988.
  • People who drink too much may start to feel pain and tingling in their limbs.

Dr. Moawad regularly writes and edits health and career content for medical books and publications. Some of the symptoms of alcoholic neuropathy can be partially reversed. Heidi Moawad is a neurologist and expert in the field of brain health and neurological disorders. Jack joined the clinical team at Hemet Valley Recovery Center in 2018 with 22 years alcohol neuropathy of experience in the field of Chemical Dependency, in Men’s and Woman’s Residential Recovery Programs, Outpatient Clinics, and Drunk Driver Programs. 23 years ago Jack dedicated his life to helping others learn a new way of living free of active addiction. Jack is committed to spirituality, family, humor, and helping the community overcome addiction.


People with extreme neuropathy may develop chronic (essential) tremor or other movement disorders. It doesn’t happen overnight, but diabetes can cause nerve damage, especially if your blood sugar is out of control. You may have pain, tingling, or no feeling in your feet, legs, and hands. A restricted or poor diet or health problems such as Crohn’s disease are some reasons you may not get enough vitamins. This includes activities such as typing, playing tennis, or any activity that repeatedly uses a certain part of the body (like your wrist or elbow).

alcohol neuropathy

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