Alternative medicine

By Mayo Clinic Staff

There are a number of alternative treatments that may help relieve the pain of diabetic neuropathy, such as:

  • Capsaicin. When applied to the skin, capsaicin cream can reduce pain sensations in some people. Side effects may include a burning feeling and skin irritation.
  • Alpha-lipoic acid. This powerful antioxidant is found in some foods and may help relieve the symptoms of peripheral neuropathy.
  • Transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation (TENS). Your doctor may prescribe this therapy, which can help prevent pain signals from reaching your brain. TENS delivers tiny electrical impulses to specific nerve pathways through small electrodes placed on your skin. Although safe and painless, TENS doesn't work for everyone or for all types of pain.
  • Acupuncture. Acupuncture may help relieve the pain of neuropathy, and generally doesn't have any side effects. Keep in mind that you may not get immediate relief with acupuncture and will likely require more than one session.
Feb. 24, 2015

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