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Click to add/remove this article to your list of 'My Favorites' A Regional Assessment of Painful Diabetic Peripheral Neuropathy (DPN)

Year: 2011

Abstract Number: 2112-PO


Institutions: DeWitt, MI, Maryville, IL, Maumee, OH, Mason, OH, Westerville, OH, New York, NY, Edwardsville, IL

Results: Poor control of blood glucose levels in diabetic patients can lead to many complications, one of which is nerve damage or neuropathy. The primary objectives of this project were to identify patients with diabetes currently suffering with signs and symptoms of painful DPN, evaluate the various characteristics of pain in DPN, and evaluate patients' level of pain before and after initiation of DPN medication therapy. Any patient with diabetes at least 18 years of age was eligible to participate in this self-assessment survey. The following information was analyzed: patient demographics, characteristics of diabetes, nature of peripheral neuropathy/pain, satisfaction with current medication treatment, and pain levels before and after treatment. The privacy-compliant data was analyzed in Microsoft Access. A total of 399 patients from seven healthcare sites, within the Midwest (MI, IL, and OH), were included. The average age of patients was 68.2 years with the majority (81.5%) having type 2 diabetes. Nerve Pain was reported by 185 of 399 patients (46.4%). The prevalence of reported pain for greater than 5 years was 27.6%. The most commonly reported site of nerve pain was in the feet (39.8%). Common characteristics of nerve pain included numbness (65.4%), pins and needles (58.9%), hot and burning sensations (43.8%), and electric shock (33.0%). The percentage of patients who reported moderate to severe pain (pain score 4 or higher) over a 1-week period was 64.4%, with 41.1% experiencing it throughout the day. For those who responded they had experienced nerve pain (n=185), 23% had been treated, while 30% received no treatment; 48% were satisfied with their current treatment regimen. Overall, 28.6% of patients reported severe pain (7 or higher) prior to their current treatment with only 7.1% experiencing severe pain on current treatment. In addition, the number of patients having none-mild pain (0-3) increased from 7.1% to 19.1% on the current regimen. In summary, it is important to assess neuropathic pain in patients with diabetes. This project provides the necessary questions that healthcare providers can ask their patients in order to properly assess and treat pain more effectively.