What is it?

Paresthesia is numbness or a burning feeling that occurs most often in the extremities, such as the hands, arms, legs, or feet, but that can happen elsewhere in the body.

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Additional names

This group contains additional names:
- Formication
- Allodynia
- Numbness

Signs & symptoms

Paresthesia can affect any part of the body (hands, arms, legs, feet). It can be temporary or chronic. The symptoms may include numbness, weakness, tingling, burning, and cold feeling. Chronic paresthesia may cause stabbing pain. That may lead to the clumsiness of the affected limb.


Diagnosis of parasthesia may include:
- Nerve conduction study: measures how fast nerve impulses travel in the muscles.
- Electromyography (EMG): To look at the electrical activity of how nerves and muscles interact.
- Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI): This can be used to look at the different areas of the body in great detail.
- Ultrasound: is used to produce images of the body. This can be applied to smaller areas.
The type of test that the doctor prescribes will depend on the results of these tests, plus a person’s symptoms and medical history.


Treatment depends on the cause of the paresthesia. It may be possible to treat the condition by eliminating the cause in some cases. If the paresthesia is due to an underlying disease, getting treatment for that disease can potentially ease the symptoms of paresthesia.

☝️ This is not a substitute for professional medical advice. Please consult with your physician before making any medical decision.

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