gender diabetic neuropathy

Gender and Diabetic Neuropathy

Men are more likely to develop diabetic neuropathy at an earlier stage than women. This has important implications for the treatment of diabetic neuropathy.

By Shiraz Abbas

Diabetic neuropathy is a kind of nerve damage that happens as a result of diabetes. It is when high blood sugar causes damage to the nerve fibers. In diabetic neuropathy, the damage happens in the peripheries of the body, usually in the legs and feet. The symptoms includes numbness and pain in these areas, but also involve problems with the cardiovascular and digestive systems. Diabetic neuropathy can sometimes be fatal.


There are some notable differences in terms of how diabetic neuropathy affects men and women. In a 2008 study, it was found that males usually develop neuropathy earlier than females. The studies found that men developed neuropathic complications at the age of 63 years whereas females did so at the age of 67 years, making it approximately a four year discrepancy.

The study is significant as it makes a case for an earlier intervention for men as it may improve their neuropathic disease outcomes.

Shiraz Abbas is the founder and manager of the CIDP Neuropathy Support Group. He is also one of the main community educators of IVIG therapy. He resides in Fresno, California. Shiraz can be contacted through our free CIDP advice service at 1-855-782-0574.

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