Autonomic neuropathy

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Autonomic neuropathy
Classification and external resources
Specialty neurology
MedlinePlus 000776
eMedicine article/1173756

Autonomic neuropathy (also AN or AAN) is a form of polyneuropathy that affects the non-voluntary, non-sensory nervous system (i.e., the autonomic nervous system), affecting mostly the internal organs such as the bladder muscles, the cardiovascular system, the digestive tract, and the genital organs. These nerves are not under a person's conscious control and function automatically. Autonomic nerve fibers form large collections in the thorax, abdomen, and pelvis outside the spinal cord. They have connections with the spinal cord and ultimately the brain, however. Most commonly autonomic neuropathy is seen in persons with long-standing diabetes mellitus type 1 and 2. In most—but not all—cases, autonomic neuropathy occurs alongside other forms of neuropathy, such as sensory neuropathy.

Autonomic neuropathy is one cause of malfunction of the autonomic nervous system (referred to as dysautonomia), but not the only one; some conditions affecting the brain or spinal cord also may cause autonomic dysfunction, such as multiple system atrophy, and therefore, may cause similar symptoms to autonomic neuropathy.

Signs and symptoms[edit]

The signs and symptoms of autonomic neuropathy include the following:[citation needed]

Causes[edit]

Many health conditions can cause autonomic neuropathy. Some common causes of autonomic neuropathy include:[citation needed]

Mechanism[edit]

Diagnosis[edit]

Treatment[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Vinik, AI; Erbas, T (2013). "Diabetic autonomic neuropathy". Handbook of clinical neurology. 117: 279–94. doi:10.1016/b978-0-444-53491-0.00022-5. PMID 24095132.