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Diseases & Conditions
4 reasons for tingling or numbness in the arms and legs
- By Heidi Godman, Executive Editor, Harvard Health Letter
Nerve or artery problems are often behind the symptoms.
Temporary pins and needles sensations or numbness are common when you’ve held the same position too long: this can put pressure on a nerve or compromise blood flow to the nerve. However, some conditions can cause these same symptoms to be persistent, even constant. Here are four of the most common reasons for such longer-lasting symptoms.
1. Peripheral neuropathy
This condition involves damage to nerve fibers that run throughout the body. Most often, the symptoms start gradually, first in the limbs, particularly the toes. The symptoms include a reduced ability to sense something touching the skin, tingling, burning, or itching, as well as weakness, twitching, or shrinkage of the muscles.
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About the Author
Heidi Godman, Executive Editor, Harvard Health Letter
As a service to our readers, Harvard Health Publishing provides access to our library of archived content. Please note the date of last review or update on all articles.
No content on this site, regardless of date, should ever be used as a substitute for direct medical advice from your doctor or other qualified clinician.
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