Thiamine deficiency related peripheral neuropathy in peripartum women of Kashmir, India: a hospital based study


  • Sheikh Hilal Ahmad Department of Neurology, Jawahar Lal Nehru Memorial Hospital, Srinagar, Jammu and Kashmir, India
  • S. Bashir Ahmad Department of Neurology, Super Speciality Hospital, Srinagar, Jammu and Kashmir, India
  • Asma Jan Dietician, Khyber Medical Institute, Srinagar, Jammu and Kashmir, India



Beri Beri, Neuropathy, Peripartum, Pregnancy, Thiamine deficiency


Background: Beri Beri is still seen in Asian countries due to the large-scale consumption of thiamine depleted polished rice. Thiamine deficiency related disorders are increasingly being reported from Kashmir from last two decades. Specifically, a sensorimotor axonal neuropathy occasionally develops from thiamine deficiency and may occur even without associated Wernicke’s encephalopathy.

Methods: This study is a retrospective observational study. All peripartum females referred to our departments from January 2016 to December 2017 with complaints of generalized weakness and or sensory symptoms in form of paresthesias /numbness in limbs were enrolled. Clinical features, electrophysiological features, course in hospital and response to treatment in suspected thiamine deficiency related neuropathy patients were recorded.

Results: Forty-three cases were included in the study. Twenty-nine patients were suspected to have nutritional neuropathy because of thiamine deficiency at the time of admission. Out of these 27 showed improvement on treatment with thiamine.

Conclusions: Thiamine responsive neuropathy is common in peripartum women of this part of world. Diagnosis is usually made clinically, in at risk individuals presenting with characteristic clinical features.


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