Annals of Indian Academy of Neurology
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Year : 2017  |  Volume : 20  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 173-184

Epidemiology of peripheral neuropathy: An Indian perspective

Department Of Neurology, Bangur Institute Of Neurosciences, Kolkata, West Bengal, India

Correspondence Address:
Shyamal Kumar Das
Department of Neurology, Bangur Institute of Neurosciences, 52/1A, Sambhunath Pandit Street, Kolkata - 700 025, West Bengal
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/aian.AIAN_470_16

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Peripheral neuropathy (PN) is a common disorder and presents as diagnostic and therapeutic challenge to physicians and neurologists. In epidemiological studies from India from various regions the overall prevalence of PN varied from 5 to 2400 per 10,000 population in various community studies. India is composed of a multiethnic, multicultural population who are exposed to different adverse environmental factors such as arsenic and lead. Use of different chemotherapeutic agents with propensity to affect peripheral nerves, increasing methods of diagnosis of connective tissue disorders and use of immunomodulating drugs, growing aging population is expected to change the spectrum and burden of peripheral neuropathy in the community. The other important aspect of peripheral neuropathies is in terms of the geographical and occupational distribution especially of toxic neuropathies like arsenic which is common in eastern belt; lead, mercury and organo-phosphorous compounds where occupational exposures are major sources. Inflammatory neuropathies either due to vasculitis or G B Syndrome, chronic inflammatory polyradiculopathies are another major group of neuropathies which is increasing due to increase longevity of Indian subjects and immunological impairment, also adds to morbidity of the patients and are potentially treatable. Leprous neuropathy is common in India and although its frequency is significantly decreasing because of national control program yet pure neuritic form still remains a cause of concern and similar is the case with another infective cause like diptheric neurpathy. Thus this article is an attempt to cover major categories and also highlight the areas where further studies are needed.

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