Amitriptyline and desipramine, which are antidepressant medications, can often reduce the pain and discomfort of peripheral neuropathies. The anticonvulsant drug gabapentin (Neurontin) may also be used to control any pain. To minimize any potential side effects of these medications, the initial dose may be small and then gradually increased over time if necessary. Some find relief when using capsaicin, a topical cream or ointment containing the ingredient that gives chili peppers their heat.
To treat the diarrhea or constipation caused by autonomic neuropathies, over-the-counter anti-diarrheal medications or laxatives are often helpful. Tight stockings can keep blood from pooling in the legs, and people who experience orthostasis are advised to stand up slowly. Finally, Viagra is helpful for some men with diabetes-related erectile dysfunction, though it often does not work for impotence due to diabetic neuropathy.
Neuropathies develop slowly and usually cannot be reversed.