Diabetic neuropathies are nerve disorders caused by diabetes. People with diabetes can develop nerve damage throughout their body. Some people with nerve damage have no symptoms. Others may have symptoms such as pain, tingling, or numbness (loss of feeling) in the hands, arms, feet and legs.
Nerve problems can occur in every organ system, including the digestive tract, heart and sex organs.
The latest research indicates that about 60 to 70 percent of people with diabetes have some form of neuropathy. People with diabetes can develop nerve problems at any time, but risk rises with age and longer duration of diabetes.
The highest rate of neuropathy are among people who have had diabetes for at least 25 years. Diabetic neuropathies appear more common in people who have problems controlling their blood glucose, also called blood sugar, as well as those with high levels of blood fat, blood pressure and those who are overweight.