A long-term complication of diabetes for many people is the onset of peripheral neuropathy. This debilitating condition is caused by high blood sugar levels and leads to small blood vessel damage. When these injured blood vessels become impaired in their ability to supply nutrients and oxygen to nerve cells, neuropathic damage results. Lack of blood supply to critical areas can even contribute to nerve fiber disappearance.
Nerve damage leads to loss of mobility, balance issues, reduced independence, and even driver’s license suspension. But it doesn’t have to be this way. As a pharmacist, you’re uniquely positioned to reach out to patients managing diabetes and conditions related to it. You can encourage them to stay independent longer and keep their licenses through education coupled with a proactive therapeutic regimen.
Here are some things your patients need to know about neuropathy and driving.