Mononeuropathy multiplex, a type of peripheral neuropathy, happens when there is damage to at least two different areas of the peripheral nervous system. Also known as mononeuritis multiplex or multifocal neuropathy, the disorder can cause tingling, numbness, pain and paralysis, among other symptoms. It can be caused by diabetes, rheumatoid arthritis, lupus and diseases that affect the blood vessels.
Symptoms will vary depending on which nerves are affected and may include:
- Abnormal sensation
- Burning pain
- Difficulty controlling movement
- Loss of bladder or bowel control
- Partial paralysis
- Weakness in one part of the body
Whether mononeuropathy multiplex can be prevented depends on your specific health condition. However, patients with diabetes are less likely to develop the disorder if they maintain a healthy weight and diet and control their blood sugar. Quitting smoking is also important, because it can restrict blood flow and worsen symptoms.
- Blood vessel disorders such as polyarteritis nodosa
- Connective tissue diseases like lupus or rheumatoid arthritis
- Granulomatosis with polyangiitis, formerly known as Wegener’s granulomatosis
- Infections, such as hepatitis, HIV or Lyme disease
- Other blood disorders like cryoglobulinemia and hypereosinophilia
- Sjögren’s syndrome
- Medical history and symptom review. Your doctor will review your symptoms and medical history, along with risk factors.
- Nerve testing and bloodwork. After a physical examination to determine which nerves might be affected, your doctor is likely to conduct an electromyography (EMG), along with a nerve conduction test. These two tests use electrodes to show how fast your nerves are transmitting electrical signals. Your doctor may also cut a small piece of nerve tissue from the affected area in order to do a biopsy. Depending on your medical history and symptoms, your doctor may also order a range of bloodwork.
Treatment options can vary depending on the causes of your mononeuropathy multiplex. Common procedures may include the following:
- Anti-seizure medications or over-the-counter pain relievers
- Occupational therapy
- Orthopedic interventions, like braces or splints
- Physical therapy
Patients with advanced mononeuropathy multiplex may have a dangerous lack of sensation. In such cases, safety at home is paramount. Your doctor may advise you to:
- Avoid putting pressure on your elbows or knees.
- Install railings and rearrange your furniture or remove rugs.
- Monitor other injuries for signs of infection.
- Wear non-slip shoes.
Why Choose UK HealthCare for Neuromuscular Disorders?
If you or a loved one is living with a neuromuscular disorder, neuromuscular doctors with Kentucky Neuroscience Institute can offer the latest and most sophisticated care options. UK HealthCare’s ALS Multidisciplinary Clinic earned accreditation as a Certified Treatment Center of Excellence from the ALS Association. This honor is awarded to facilities that demonstrate competency meeting the clinical care and treatment standards set forth by the ALS Association. These facilities must also take part in ALS research and a comprehensive site review.
Additionally, the Kentucky Neuroscience Institute is ranked 44th in the country by U.S. News & World Report, and our physicians are regularly named to the Best Doctors in America List.