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Numb Toes and Aching Soles: Coping with Peripheral Neuropathy [Paperback]

John A. Senneff
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)

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Book Description

January 1999 0967110718 978-0967110714
A comprehensive guide for the millions who have painful and disabling peripheral neuropathy. Covered are causes, symptoms, tests and treatments- both conventional and alternative- and ways of coping day to day. The book is written from a patient's point of view with over 200 patient comments on treatments. There are also special sections for those with diabetic or HIV-related neuropathies (up to half in these groups are affected), as well as reports on experimental drugs in the pipeline. Inputs from 12 leading neurologists have been incorporated.

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"A superbly researched and readable book that deals with peripheral neuropathy from the patient's perspective. The author has taken great pains to assemble accurate and up-to-date information that will be of substantial benefit in helping patients. . . .The book can also be recommended to physicians who want insight into how patients are affected." -- Dr. David A. Greenberg, Professor and Vice-Chairman of Neurology, University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine.

"An outstanding and comprehensive treatment of PN." -- L. W. "Bill" Cracken, Col. USAF (ret)

"Congratulations on completing your informative and exhaustive work. It will be a valuable resource to patients and physicians alike." -- Dr. Laurence J. Kinsella, Chief, Division of Neurology, Mt. Sinai Medical Center, Cleveland, Ohio

"John has performed a marvelous service for the sufferer [of PN] in his exhaustive research and attention to detail. . . . The book is easy to read and yet a great resource for the lay person, and I believe it will be a valuable source of information for the medical practitioner." -- Jim Miller, retired aeronautical engineer

"The book reflects an enormous amount of research and work, and will save present and future neuropathy victims a great deal of anguish and frustration caused by the previous lack of readily available information on causes, symptoms, treatments and medical progress. . . .It should be mandatory reading for every medical student, doctor, nurse and therapist. It is definitely a 'must have' for every victim of neuropathy and should be read, re-read and used as a reference guide and self-defense mechanism. . . . [The book] is obviously a 'labor of love, ' compassionately written by a victim of the disease itself." -- Rosemary Waggener, rancher

"There is a tremendous need for this- a book written for people with peripheral neuropathy by someone who has the disorder himself. Numb Toes and Aching Soles has much to offer these 'PNers.'" -- Dr. Richard A. Lewis, Professor of Neurology and Associate Chair, Wayne State

"You have put together something of great service to PNers everywhere." -- Gil Wolfe, Professor of Neurology, University of Texas, Southwestern Medical Center at Dallas, Texas

From the Publisher

Following are comments from doctors and patients who have read the book:

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Customer Reviews

Most helpful customer reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Another suggestion March 11 2002
By A Customer
Further to my earlier review of this book (July 9, 2001), I would like to add a recommendation that people with peripheral neuropathy might cautiously consider the dietary approach of the book "Enter the Zone" by Dr Barry Sears and William Lawren. That book describes a diet designed to control insulin levels, and, apart from type II diabetes, it is advertised primarily for cardiovascular health, athletic performance, slow loss of excess weight (if there is an excess), and to fight the effects of aging. But the effects that I consider more important are to reduce pain and reduce the severity of any disease that involves an over-production of the inflammation-promoting hormones that are known as prostaglandins and leukotrienes, but the author prefers to call them eicosanoids. Many of the diseases that can trigger peripheral neuropathy involve such a mechanism. Depression (at least of a fairly mild kind) apparently also may improve on this diet. I have made some other comments in a separate review of the Sears and Lawren book, particularly noting that caution is required and that some people may be harmed by increasing the protein in their diet -- but it might help some people.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Numb Toes and Aching Soles by John Senneff July 9 2001
By A Customer
A self-help book for people who suffer from peripheral neuropathy is very necessary, and this book is an excellent beginning, but there are some unfortunate holes in its coverage. Since doctors rarely volunteer information, it is important to know what questions to ask, and in this disease there are many questions to ask, since what works for one person might not work for another. There is apparently a great deal of ongoing medical research activity that might produce significant results in the near future; a strength of the book is the pointers that it gives to discussion groups and other sources of the latest information.
On the negative side (perhaps a revised edition is in the works?): 1) thyroid deficiency should really be added to the list of the notable (and treatable) causes (see, for example, American Family Physician, 1998, 57(4):755-766); 2) The section on alpha-lipoic acid has this vitamin-like molecule (C8H14O2S2, found in greatest abundance in meat) totally confounded with the essential fatty acid alpha-linolenic acid (C18H30O2, for which flax oil is a popular supplement). Another small section that would improve the book is a discussion of the probable causes of B-vitamin deficiency, for example antiulcer medications (Journal of Clinical Epidemiology, 2001, 54(5):531-534).
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5.0 out of 5 stars The BEST Current Work on Neuropathy for Patients Feb. 12 2000
We podiatrists may see more patients with neuropathy than any other medical specialists and due to the unique long term personal relationships that we often form with these patients, we are so often called upon to come up with ways to help these patients relieve their symptoms. 
This is, in a nutshell, the best current work on the subject of neuropathy for lay people. It explains the problem, goes through the rational for treatment, and discusses the treatments one by one. In addition to the use of PO medication, it covers vitamin therapy, physical therapies, psychotherapy and for patients who fail standard treatments, it covers alternative therapies such as plasmapheresis and hyperbaric oxygen. Mr. Seneff also covers experimental treatments still in clinical studies. His treatment of the subject is comprehensive and empathetic. He even devotes a chapter to coping skills, which will benefit all patients.  His fairness and good judgment is evidenced by the variety of quotes that he includes, to demonstrate the range of experiences that different patients have to the same treatment. he value of this book, for both the practicing podiatrist and his patient, lies in how comprehensive it is in it's discussion of treatment options. I, for one, have never felt that I had considered ALL treatment option, until I read this book. The sections on physical modalities are also very valuable. Many of these patients are on multiple medications already and are reluctant to take additional medicines. Mr. Senneff found that many patients have gotten considerable relief from non-medical treatments.
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1.0 out of 5 stars Not much help Sept. 4 2001
By A Customer
It might be useful for potential customers to understand that this is basically a literature review by an attorney who has PN, not a book written by a medical doctor experienced with treatment of the problem. The book seemingly includes every possible literature reference to treatments, and many anecdotal comments/cures. It is very much like what you might find if you searched every issue of Prevention magazine looking for cures for a desease -- one would find everything from herbal cures to surgery and would have little idea of what, if anything might work for you. Perhaps this is the best one could expect, considering the apparent lack of science on the desease, and some may find it informative, but it was disappointing to me.
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The book opens the inner perspectiveness of one who has learned to deal directly with Neuropathy and the ability to tell others about it in a non-medical terminology laymen can understand.
Much like "Coping with a Myositis Disease" book, the real life accounts of having a disease is invaluable. Invaluable not only to the patient, but relatives and even the medical professionals who can't exactly explain or understand the inner workings of the patient's anxiety, concern about their ever-changing lifestyles, and the uncertainty of the future.
This book is highly recommended if the reader wants to read about the disease actually written by a professional medical patient/physician.
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Most recent customer reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Numb Toea and Aching Soles: Coping with Peripheral Neuropathy
This book is written by a fellow sufferer of peripheral neuropathy. He has certainly Numb Toes and Aching Soles: Coping with Peripheral Neuropathy done his 'Research' on the... Read more
Published on June 26 2012 by Bruce, from Canada
2.0 out of 5 stars Misleading title
Numb Toes. That's what I wanted to learn about. I Read the book, tons of information on Peripheral Neuropathy but very little about toe numbness. Read more
Published on Aug. 27 2003 by Robert G. Garrison
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Book
One reviwer had written: "It is very much like what you might find if you searched every issue of Prevention magazine looking for cures for a desease -- one would find... Read more
Published on Dec 18 2002
5.0 out of 5 stars Numb Toes and Aching Soles
This is am absolute must for anyone diagnosed with peripheral neuropathy. The resources are very helpful and time saving when trying to cope with this disorder. Read more
Published on April 17 2002
5.0 out of 5 stars My Experience
After years of suffering this book pointed me in the right diretion. It helped me by understanding the underlying causes, convinced my spouse that it was nor all in my head and... Read more
Published on Feb. 24 2000 by Sig Gebhardt
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent patients manual
A great resource, especially if you are new to this disease. Even if you are not new to it, there are no doubt sections you will be glad you read. Read more
Published on Jan. 11 2000
5.0 out of 5 stars Mr. Senneff offers HOPE for those suffering from neuropathy
This book is easy to read, well written and chockful of helpful information. I purchased it at a diabetes seminar, raced home and quickly read it. Read more
Published on Dec 5 1999
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