This article provides an overview of the most common peripheral neuropathic disorders in pregnancy with a focus on clinical recognition, diagnosis, and treatment.
The literature on this topic consists primarily of case reports, case series, and retrospective reviews. Recent work, particularly in carpal tunnel syndrome, brachial neuritis, and inherited neuropathies in pregnancy, has added to our knowledge of this field. Awareness of diabetic polyneuropathy with associated autonomic dysfunction in pregnancy has grown as the incidence of diabetes mellitus increases in women of childbearing age.
Women may develop mononeuropathy, plexopathy, radiculopathy, or polyneuropathy during pregnancy or postpartum. Pregnancy often influences consideration of etiology, treatment, and prognosis. In women of childbearing age with known acquired or genetic neuromuscular disorders, pregnancy should be anticipated and appropriate counseling provided. An interdisciplinary approach with other medical specialties is often necessary.