Members of the Neuropathic Pain Network (NPN) recently convened to discuss ways to help individuals with neuropathic (nerve) pain?an often underdiagnosed and undertreated condition. Neuropathic pain is described as a burning, tingling, and/or shock-like sensation. The pain is a result of an injury or disease of the nervous system that can be difficult to manage. In some cases, the pain can be so extreme that some patients find even the touch of clothing on skin triggers an unbearable burning pain.

"The mission of the NPN is to actively support people with neuropathic pain, by enabling them to better cope with their pain, to obtain the best treatment and, ultimately, to improve the quality of their lives," said Harry Kletzko, chair of the NPN and vice president of the German Pain League. "The NPN will provide important public education about the signs and symptoms of neuropathic pain as well as identify measures to combat this devastating condition."

The NPN, comprised of 7 organizations, was launched in May 2004. The group was formed to address the lack of public information available to individuals with neuropathic pain. Plans are currently under way to introduce a Web site dedicated to individuals with the condition.