Table 4—

Contrasts between acute sensory and chronic sensorimotor neuropathies

Acute sensoryChronic sensorimotor
Mode of onsetRelatively rapidGradual, insidious
SymptomsSevere burning pain Aching: weight loss usualBurning pain, paresthesiae, numbness; weight loss unusual
Symptom severity+++0 to ++
SignsMild sensory in some: motor unusualStocking and glove sensory loss: absent ankle reflexes
Other diabetic complicationsUnusualIncreased prevalence
Electrophysiological investigationsMay be normal or minor abnormalitiesAbnormalities unusual in motor and sensory nerves
Natural historyComplete recovery within 12 monthsSymptoms may persist intermittently for years: at risk of foot ulceration