Definition

Neuropathic pain is a painful sensation that occurs due to damaged or abnormally working nerves. It may also occur because of abnormalities in the central nervous system's interpretation of the signals it is receiving from these nerves. The pain may be long-lasting.

Nervous System


Causes

This condition maybe caused by damaged nerve fibers that send pain signals to your brain. This can happen even when there is no event to trigger the pain. For example, a person with neuropathic pain may have a feeling of pins and needles (paresthesia) when putting on socks.

Nerve damage may be caused by:

  • Physical damage
  • Chemicals
  • The nerve not getting the vital nutrients needed to function
  • Infection
  • The body’s immune system attacking the nerves

Sometimes the cause of the nerve pain is unknown.

Symptoms

Neuropathic pain may cause sensations of:

  • Burning
  • Stabbing
  • Electrical shock
  • Pins and needles/tingling
  • Numbness

This pain may be constant or occur off and on during the day. The condition can get in the way of daily activities, including sleep. In some cases, even the touch of a bed sheet can cause pain.