neuritis(redirected from diphtheritic neuritis)
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an inflammatory disease of the peripheral nerves. The symptoms of neuritis include pain, paralysis, pareses, and the decrease or loss of nerve sensitivity. Neuritides can result from a wide variety of causes. For example, otitis in the middle ear, and such infectious agents as the virus of herpes zoster can be involved in the pathogenesis of neuritis of the facial nerve. Catarrhal factors and traumas can also play a part in the development of this type of neuritis.
Polyneuritis is a special form of neuritis in which many nerves are involved in the disease process. Some polyneuritides are caused by a neurotropic virus. The roots of the spinal nerve are usually affected (as in polyradiculoneuritis), and often the spinal column and even the brain are affected. The most common causes of polyneuritides are chronic exogenous intoxications, such as those caused by alcohol, botulism toxin, and lead, or endogenous, intoxications, for instance, those resulting from diabetes and uremia.
Patients with neuritis experience pain in the extremities, muscular weakness, disturbances of sensitivity, atrophies and pareses of muscles, changes in skin coloring, sweating, and chilliness. These changes appear predominantly in the regions of the hands and feet. Neuritis is treated by first curing the causative disease and then using antibiotics, analgesics, sedatives, and B vitamins. Physiotherapy is also indicated.
V. A. KARLOV