Cold Feet? Therapy Puts Out Neuropathy Fire

Treatments rebuild damaged nerves that cause feelings of cold and heat in extremities.

Starry Starry Explosion

Many an artist has attempted to recreate or put their own spin on a beloved masterpiece such as Vincent van Gogh’s, The Starry Night. Few have tried to recreate that treasure on a medium as unique as the one Eris Dietz chose.

“I painted it on a conch shell,” Eris says proudly. “I call it, Starry Starry Explosion. I really wanted to paint something by Dali on a shell, but that’s really hard to do, so I chose The Starry Night by van Gogh. It turned out pretty well.”

Painting shells is Eris’ favorite hobby. Most of the shells she’s painted have been dressed up with a unique blend of bright colors, but given the right shell, Eris will take on the more difficult challenge of painting an image on it.

Two years ago, that challenge became even greater after Eris suffered head, back and neck injuries during a fall at home. The injuries, which included several ruptured discs, were so great that Eris had to give up her job as a virtual security guard.

To alleviate her neck and back pain, Eris was advised to visit a chiropractor. Acting on a recommendation from her mother, she visited Kenneth D. Carle, DC, founder of Carle Chiropractic Clinic and Renewed Life Wellness Center in Sarasota.

Since opening his practices, Dr. Carle has committed himself to offering patients the best in chiropractic services, including spinal adjustments, massage, physiotherapy, x-rays, nutritional supplements, weight loss and regenerative medicine.

Both practices proudly cater to military veterans, and together they offer treatment for all forms of neck pain, low back pain, sciatica, headaches and peripheral neuropathy, which is caused by damage to nerves outside of the brain and spinal cord.

More to the Story

Dr. Carle began his treatment of Eris by performing standard chiropractic adjustments on her back and neck. Those adjustments were making a positive impact, but one day, Eris mentioned that they weren’t doing much for another problem.

“I don’t know why I never mentioned it when I first went to see him, but I finally told Dr. Carle that my hands and feet always felt very cold,” Eris relates. “My boyfriend said they felt warm to him, but to me they were freezing.

“My feet felt so cold that I always had to have them covered. Sometimes I would wear two pair of socks and they were still cold. And at night, I sometimes had to sleep with a heating pad on my feet because they were so cold.

“I sometimes felt a lot of pain, too, especially in my feet. It was a very odd kind of pain, though. The best way I can describe it is that it felt like I had no skin on my feet. It was very weird, but it made it extremely hard for me to walk.

“I really can’t say enough about Dr. Carle and his staff. The work they have done for me is incredible.” – Eris

“When I finally told Dr. Carle about all this, he said, How long has this been going on? I said, It’s been like this for months. I thought it was from a pinched nerve and that his adjustments would help, but that wasn’t the case.”

Upon learning of the discomfort in Eris’ feet and hands, Dr. Carle performed a nerve conduction study to determine the cause of her hand and foot discomfort. The test revealed that she was experiencing peripheral neuropathy, which has four stages.

Patients in Stages 1, 2 and 3 have various amounts of pain, numbness and burning. As those symptoms grow in severity, many may lose their balance, which can lead to a loss of independence and the need for assistance from a cane, walker or motorized chair.

“In Stage 4, patients are too far gone, and some cannot be treated,” Dr. Carle explains. “That’s the stage where people need to have toes amputated and are totally reliant on others to take care of them. Thankfully, Eris was not at that stage.”

A House on Fire

Eris was diagnosed with Stage 3 peripheral neuropathy. Dr. Carle likens Stage 2 and Stage 3 to a house on fire. The goal of treatment, the doctor asserts, is to put out the fire and rebuild the house.

“It usually takes six to eight weeks to stop the fire, or the peripheral neuropathy,” Dr. Carle details. “Then we start rebuilding the house. We do that by repairing the nerves, which have been damaged because the blood supply to them has been diminished.

“To better understand it, think of the body as a plant. If a plant doesn’t have good soil, enough water and sunshine, it’s going to die. Likewise, your hands and feet need a sufficient nerve, blood and oxygen supply to survive. Lack of any of these results in a dead plant or, in the case of our feet and hands, nerve death.”

Dr. Carle has about a dozen tools available to stop peripheral neuropathy and restore damaged nerves. The severity of each patient’s condition determines which tools he uses, but one is used almost universally: a medical nerve rebuilder.

This device uses neuroelectrical therapy to repair and regenerate damaged nerves. Dr. Carle also uses red-light therapy and vibration as well as nutritional supplements and creams to promote healing from peripheral neuropathy.

The medical devices, when applied to the feet and hands, increase circulation, which increases blood flow to where the nerve damage occurred.

“One hundred percent of our patients experience some improvement in their symptoms when treatment protocols are followed,” Dr. Carle states. “We don’t get 100 percent improvement in 100 percent of our patients, but most patients experience somewhere between 30 and 75 percent relief.”

Feeling Better

Dr. Carle used all those devices in treating Eris, who was also given two medicated creams to apply to her hands and feet as well as some dietary guidelines designed to reduce inflammation and further advance healing of the nerves.

“We also provide patients with some supplements that help advance their healing,” Dr. Carle adds. “Both are vasodilators that increase the production of nitric oxide, which increases the diameter of the blood vessels and helps with blood flow.”

Eris first saw Dr. Carle last spring and began receiving treatment for neuropathy a couple of months later. Since then, she has made what she describes as a satisfying recovery.

“My neuropathy is at least 40 percent better than it was before,” she enthuses. “I can actually feel my hands, feet and ankles now, and my pain is nowhere near as bad as it was. I can walk without pain again, which is amazing.”

Eris, who was diagnosed with severe neuropathy, continues to receive home treatment. She’s confident that Dr. Carle has placed her on a path that will lead to a full recovery.

She’s grateful for the doctor’s care.

“I really can’t say enough about Dr. Carle and his staff,” Eris concludes. “Everyone there is amazing, and the work they have done for me is incredible. I absolutely recommend them to anyone. They’re just great.”

© FHCN article by Roy Cummings. Photo courtesy of Renewed Life Wellness Center. Conch photos courtesy of Eris Dietz. mkb
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