Neuropathic pain is associated with injury to the nerve. Often this type of pain is characterized by burning sensations, increased sensitivity or shooting sensations over the affected area. Patients often describe this type of pain as severe, sharp, lancinating, lightening-like, stabbing, burning, numbness, tingling, and/or weakness. It is important to understand neuropathic pain because it has very different treatment options from other types of pain. Remedies for nociceptive pain, such as NSAIDs
, do not work as well for neuropathic pain. Neuropathic pain seems to respond best to membrane-stabilizing medications. These medications are made up of the anticonvulsants
and select antidepressant
medications. These medications act by blocking the brain’s neurotransmitters. The antidepressant
medications also have beneficial effects of improved mood, decreased anxiety, and improved sleep cycle. These medications are not addictive, and when appropriately managed have few side effects.