Neuritis is a medical term meaning inflammation in the peripheral nerves (nerves outside the central nervous system are called peripheral). Symptoms of neuritis will vary depending on which nerves are affected but typically include weakness, numbness, pain, tingling sensations, loss of reflexes, muscle atrophy, or sensory disturbances (e.g., vision, balance, hearing). These symptoms can be either temporary or permanent.
Neuritis is a disease that affects the peripheral nerves and leads to changes in their structure. Treatment of neuritis depends on where exactly the pathology is located and what degree of its severity.
Neuritis is a common nerve disorder. There are several types of neuritis depending on the nerve’s inflammation.
1. Optic Neuritis
The disease is associated with the inflammation of the optic nerves. The main reasons for the development of optic neuritis are various flu infections, dental diseases, and tonsillitis. Other reasons include:
- Eye trauma and brain inflammation. Liver problems and diabetes.
- Blood diseases and different types of allergies.
- Smoking and alcohol abuse.
Modern treatment of inflammation of the optic nerves involves the use of anti-inflammatory drugs and antibiotics. You need to consult a doctor as soon as possible to prescribe diagnostic procedures to achieve treatment. He/she will diagnose and determine the course of treatment.
Among all types of pathology, one of the most common is optic neuritis, which, depending on the diagnosis results, may include therapy with the use of antispasmodic drugs, detoxification, etc. If you start the course of treatment on time, the result will not be long in coming; in particular, normal functions of the eye can be restored.
Suppose it is too late to see a doctor. In that case, neuritis will seriously harm visual functions and destroy cells, and this threatens such a serious complication as atrophy of the optic nerve. Therefore, it is essential to contact a specialist in time to prescribe an effective treatment.
2. Facial Neuritis
Another common condition is facial neuritis. You should start treatment of pathology as early as possible to prevent the development of complications. With the disease, the nerve responsible for the facial muscles of the face is affected, which leads to their weakness and a decrease (or absence) of movements.
There are several characteristic signs by which inflammation in the nerves of the face can be recognized.
- Pain behind the ear and smoothing of the nasolabial fold.
- Violation of facial asymmetry.
- Dysfunction of facial muscles (it is difficult to smile, raise eyebrows, etc.).
Other symptoms characteristic of a disease, such as facial neuritis, include difficulties closing the eyelids or moving the lips (for example, it is difficult to stretch the lips with a tube). One of the pathologies of nerve inflammation features is a vivid clinical picture, so the doctor usually quickly makes a diagnosis (but if necessary, MRI, computed tomography, etc., are performed to exclude other diseases).
Various diseases and injuries, including diseases associated with metabolic disorders, lead to this type of pathology development. A genetic predisposition can trigger neuritis.
The doctor easily identifies neuritis of the facial nerve. Treatment begins immediately to prevent the development of complications. The course of the appointment depends on the general condition of the patient. In addition, the specialist looks at the main symptoms of facial nerve neuritis, after which he prescribes special medications and gives other recommendations.
3. Brachial Neuritis
With damage to the spinal and cervical nerves, neuritis of the shoulder occurs. Treatment of the disease is based on the complete rest of the patient (especially regarding the limb affected by the pathology). A special bandage is used to keep the hand in this state. Then a neurologist prescribes medication and physiotherapy.
The disease is characterized by severe pain and decreased arm mobility. In some cases, nerve inflammation can cause a partial loss of sensation in the limb, inability to move the fingers, or perform simple bending movements with the hand. All this can lead to muscle atrophy.
Surgical treatment of brachial nerve inflammation can achieve effective results. The main drugs prescribed to the patient are non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs; they are applied to the shoulder areas in which pain occurs.
The main symptoms of pathology:
- Loss of sensation in the shoulder and forearm.
- Weakening of the shoulder muscles and difficulty bending the elbow.
- Violation of fine motor skills and loss of sensitivity in the fingers.
There are two main types of brachial neuritis: lower and upper; depending on the pathology, the symptoms may differ. The doctor will make an accurate diagnosis by examining and prescribing a diagnosis for the patient (ultrasound, X-ray, MRI, and other procedures may be prescribed at the specialist’s discretion).
4. Trigeminal Neuralgia
Thanks to modern techniques, the treatment of trigeminal neuritis allows you to defeat the disease quickly. This pathology is characterized by inflammation of the trigeminal nerves, which causes severe pain in the face. The disease is quite common.
The main reasons that lead to the development of the trigeminal nerve:
- Meningitis and various injuries.
- Consequences of concussions.
- Viral infections and herpes.
- Colds, etc.
Bacterial infections, multiple sclerosis, and long exposure to frost also lead to pathologies such as trigeminal neuralgia. Treatment is prescribed by a doctor who is guided by the general condition of the patient and the results of the diagnosis.
The main symptoms of trigeminal neuralgia are severe pain in the face. The pain can be cyclical, affecting the lower parts of the face or around the eyes and nose. In different cases, pain occurs at different intervals, hourly or once a day.
5. Auditory Neuropathy
Many patients are diagnosed with this type of pathology as auditory neuropathy. Treatment of the disease begins after the doctor makes an accurate diagnosis. The pathology develops due to inflammation of the auditory nerve, which leads to hearing problems. Most often, this illness affects the elderly.
The most common symptoms of auditory neuropathy are:
- Hearing problems are a key symptom; if treatment is not started on time, neuritis will continue to progress, leading to complete hearing loss.
- Noise and ringing in the ears, patients often complain of such symptoms, characteristic of progressive neuritis, so if you immediately consult a doctor, this symptomatology can be avoided.
- Dizziness, gait disturbance (instability), frequent headaches, etc.
If you start treating acoustic neuropathy on time, you can relieve symptoms and stop the development of the disease. Neuritis is diagnosed by audiometry. Patients have prescribed analgesics, diuretic drugs, as well as particular drugs that help improve blood circulation.
- How do you treat neuritis?
Treatment of neuritis also includes physiotherapy – ultraphonophoresis, UHF, electrophoresis using special compounds, etc. If carpal tunnel syndrome is detected, drugs are delivered to the diseased canal. Of great importance is the rehabilitation of neuritis. It includes not only drug therapy but also massages and exercise therapy.
- How long does it take for neuritis to go away?
Acute manifestations of neuritis can usually be removed within 10-15 days if you follow the doctor’s instructions. After that, additional procedures are recommended aimed at restoring normal muscle functions. Physiotherapy and/or massage are often prescribed for this.
- How is neuritis diagnosed?
Diagnosis of neuritis:
- blood tests (clinical and biochemical),
- general urine analysis;
- MRI (magnetic resonance imaging);
- electroneuromyography (ENMG);
- CT (computed tomography).
- Can neuritis be cured?
For example, for neuritis of the facial nerve, treatment should be started as early as possible – preferably already in the first hours after the onset of symptoms. In this case, the success of treatment of neuritis of the facial nerve will be maximum, and in 75-80% of cases, it will completely eliminate the symptoms of the disease.
- What is the difference between neuritis and neuralgia?
Neuritis and neuralgia. The difference between these two concepts lies in the fact that neuritis is accompanied by impaired motor function, and neuralgia is a pain syndrome.