What is CIPN?

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What is Chemo Induced Peripheral Neuropahty (CIPN)?

  • Damage to the nerves from toxins, chemotherapy
  • Sensory, Motor and Autonomic are the types of nerves, they are typically the first affected by chemotherapy and motor and autonomic are the less affected
  1. Sensory nerves process sensory information like vision, hearing, touch, taste, smell and balance and movement
  2. The nerves affected by CIPN are the ones that are farthest away from the spinal cord
  3. Certain chemotherapy drugs have been known to cause peripheral neuropathy, 4-74% of cancer patients experience CIPN
  4. Motor Nerves carry signals from the brain and spinal cord to the different parts of the body
  5. Autonomic nerves regulated the bodies response systems

Some of the symptoms may include:

  • Loss of feeling
  • Tingling
  • Burning
  • Pain
  • Pressure might be more painful
  • Decreased reflexes
  • Unable to hold on to things as well as dropping things
  • Balance disturbances
  • Sensitivity to heat and cold
  • Muscle atrophy

Research indicate there are over 100 types of neuropathy, some other causes for neuropathy may include:

  • Hormonal imbalances can disturb some of the metabolic processes
  • Vitamin deficiencies, specifically vitamins E, B1, B6 & B12 are a vital to healthy nerve function
  • Vascular damage when the oxygen supply is cut off or stopped to the nerves
  • Connective tissue disorders and chronic inflammation can lead to the destruction of connective tissues
  • Tumor placement can increase pressure on nerve fibers
  • Repetitive stress can lead to entrapment of nerve


Treatment options:

  • Exercise to increase blood flow to the distal extremities.

Talk to your doctor about other treatment options that are best for you!

-Author Catherine Standiford

-brought to you by Cancer Rehabilitation Centers


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