Neuropathic pain (nerve pain) is caused by a damaged or reduced effect of a nerve. Changes occur in the nerve. Nerve cells try to repair the damage. Small nerve shoots emerge that try to find a connection at the spot where the nerve is damaged. Sometimes these nerve breakers join and a nerve node (neuroma) develops. The nerve can become hypersensitive and can cause pain in small contact. You can recognize this as electric impulses, a sharp and burning pain.
Nerve damage virtually never heals automatically. It is important that you treat neuropathic pain on time, this increases the chance of good results. You can treat neuropathic pain in different ways, for example with medication and neuromodulation.
Painkillers in case of nerve pain are not effective
In the treatment of pain is often thought to painkillers, such as paracetamol and NSAIDs. Yet painkillers are not effective in nerve pain. That is why doctors often prescribe medication with an inhibitory effect on the nervous system. Medications for epilepsy or depression are often used in the treatment of nerve pain. These drugs inhibit the signal transfer of painful stimuli in the nerves, reducing the pain signal. Anti-epileptics and antidepressants should usually be used for a long time. Sometimes the doctor prescribes a combination.
Antidepressants in neuropathic pain
Antidepressants are normally used in depression and anxiety. Antidepressants are also effective in neuropathic pain. How antidepressants work exactly for nerve pain is unknown. The most commonly used medications are:
Anti-epileptics in neuropathic pain
Anti-epileptics increase the stimulus threshold of neurons in the nervous system. As a result, the damaged nerves send fewer stimuli to the brain. Reduce the pain. Examples of anti-epileptic drugs for nerve pain are:
Neuromodulation in neuropathic pain
Neuromodulation is an effective proven treatment for chronic pain and neuropathic pain (nerve pain). Neuromodulation affects the nerves in the spinal cord with electrical impulses. In neuromodulation you stimulate the nerves via small electrical currents. These streams modulate the pain signals before they reach the brain. This means you experience less to no pain. Read more about neuromodulation.