Diabetic neuropathy and painful diabetic neuropathy in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region: Much work needs to be done

Ioannis N. Petropoulos, Saad Javed, Shazli Azmi, Adnan Khan, Georgios Ponirakis, Rayaz Malik

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

7 Citations (Scopus)


The prevalence of diabetic peripheral neuropathy and painful diabetic peripheral neuropathy in the Middle East shows huge variability. This reflects the differing diagnostic techniques employed to diagnose neuropathy, but also the heterogeneity of the populations studied and the selection of populations from primary and secondary care. The treatment of diabetic neuropathy per se is inadequate as reflected by the poor control of risk factors such as glucose control, blood pressure and lipids in this region, which translates into the high rates of foot ulceration and amputation. In relation to symptomatic treatment, recommendations based on trials conducted in the West are without question, endorsed for the treatment of populations in the Middle East. Surely the demographics and patient responses both in terms of efficacy and side effects differ and therefore warrant local clinical trials. There is an over reliance on the prescription of B vitamins with the claim that they induce nerve repair. Whilst there is evidence for the relief of neuropathic symptoms with both vitamin B and D, again clinical trials are required in this region to establish their role in the treatment of diabetic neuropathy and painful diabetic neuropathy.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)284-294
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Taibah University Medical Sciences
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1 Aug 2016



  • Arab world
  • Diabetic neuropathy
  • MENA
  • Painful diabetic neuropathy
  • Vitamin D

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)

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