Peter Hibberd, M.D., is a doctor whose advice is based on more than 28 years of hospital outpatient and inpatient experience. He is an experienced emergency medicine physician, surgeon, and consultant. Dr. Hibberd is certified by the American Board of Emergency Medicine. He is also a fellow and active member of the American Academy of Family Physicians, an active member of the American College of Emergency Physicians, and a member and fellow of the American Academy of Emergency Medicine. Dr. Hibberd has earned numerous national and international professional certifications, memberships, and awards.

What Causes Burning Feet?

Thursday, 26 August 2010 09:04 AM

Question: I have had burning feet for several years. I am not a diabetic, am 81 years of age, and am in good health. Any suggestions?

Dr. Hibberd's Answer:

Microvascular disease of the small blood vessels surrounding nerve fibers will cause variable symptoms. Most often, numbness in your feet reflects a nutritional or circulatory deficiency.

Diabetics frequently suffer premature onset of microvascular disease as a result of continuously elevated blood glucoses. However, many other endocrine disorders and diseases may also cause adverse nerve function. Examples include hypothyroidism, calcium deficiency, vitamin deficiency (such as B-12, vitamin C, etc.), trace element excess, disorders of metabolism, and the list goes on.

If you have burning or numbness in your feet, you should be evaluated by your private physician for possible neuropathy, especially if no cause is obvious. Do not delay. Matters may become worse and cause irreversible damage before you get it treated. You can expect your physician to take your history, do a physical evaluation, lab studies, and possibly noninvasive testing to confirm findings.

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