While signs and symptoms of peripheral neuropathy may appear to be similar among all patients, further evaluation both at the bedside and beyond demonstrate distinct differences in the pattern of certain neuropathies. A working knowledge of these differences and of the available tools to distinguish them is quite useful to the clinician. This chapter provides an overview of the distinction among various neuropathy profiles. Focal neuropathies may occur from compression or from entrapment. Neurologic examination aids in anatomic localization, which further refines and directs electrodiagnostic and ultrasound testing. Subsequent therapeutic approaches vary depending on the location of the focal neuropathy. Focal neuropathy may occur outside of pregnancy but the outcome is more predictable in this situation.
Keywords: Bell palsy; Carpal tunnel syndrome; Compression; Entrapment; Etiology; Meralgia paresthetica; Mononeuropathy; Pregnancy; Prognosis.
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