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Diagnostic tools, biomarkers, and treatments in diabetic polyneuropathy and cardiovascular autonomic neuropathy

Author(s):

Gidon J. Bönhof, Christian Herder and Dan Ziegler*  

Abstract:


The various manifestations of diabetic neuropathy including distal symmetric sensorimotor polyneuropathy (DSPN) and cardiovascular autonomic neuropathy (CAN) are among to the most prevalent chronic complications of diabetes. Major clinical complications of diabetic neuropathies such as neuropathic pain, chronic foot ulcers, and orthostatic hypotension are associated with considerable morbidity, increased mortality, and diminished quality of life. Despite the substantial individual and socioeconomic burden, the strategies to diagnose and treat diabetic neuropathies remain insufficient. This review provides an overview on the current clinical aspects and recent advances in exploring local and systemic biomarkers of both DSPN and CAN assessed in human studies (such as biomarkers of inflammation and oxidative stress) to better understand the underlying pathophysiology and to improve early detection. Current therapeutic options for DSPN are (I) causal treatment including lifestyle modification, optimal glycemic control, and multifactorial risk intervention; (II) pharmacotherapy derived from pathogenetic concepts; and (III) analgesic treatment against neuropathic pain. Recent advances in each category are discussed including non-pharmacological approaches such as electrical stimulation. Finally, the current therapeutic options for cardiovascular autonomic complications are provided. These insights should contribute to a broader understanding of the various manifestations of diabetic neuropathies from both the research and clinical perspectives.

Keywords:

polyneuropathy, peripheral neuropathy, autonomic neuropathy, CAN, neuropathic pain, inflammation, therapy, exercise

Affiliation:

Institute for Clinical Diabetology, German Diabetes Center, Leibniz Center for Diabetes Research at Heinrich Heine University Düsseldorf, Düsseldorf, Institute for Clinical Diabetology, German Diabetes Center, Leibniz Center for Diabetes Research at Heinrich Heine University Düsseldorf, Düsseldorf, Institute for Clinical Diabetology, German Diabetes Center, Leibniz Center for Diabetes Research at Heinrich Heine University Düsseldorf, Düsseldorf



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