peripheral neuropathy

Peripheral neuropathy often causes weakness, numbness, and pain.  A few common forms of peripheral neuropathy are: diabetic, inflammatory, and compression (carpal tunnel syndrome.)  As often is the case, without proper intervention, symptoms from this condition can make it difficult for people to continue to be active and enjoy life.  Eric Clapton appears to be no exception.

Guitar Player Says Back Pain Has Become Peripheral Neuropathy

Peripheral NeuropathySlowhand is turning out to be a self-fulfilling prophecy for Eric Clapton.

The man who once inspired taggers to proclaim in paint that “Clapton is God” is facing a debilitating condition.

Called peripheral neuropathy, the affliction creates shooting nerve pain and numbness that has hurt Clapton’s ability to play guitar, the very thing that made him “god” in the first place. Instead of the searing soaring stringed rampages of “Layla,”

Clapton’s fretwork is now limited. To borrow from another famous song he played on and made his own, fans may now gently weep for Clapton’s best guitar-playing days. They are behind him.  Read more…


The rock guitarist has spoken on his pain as follows:

The acclaimed musician told Classic Rock magazine he “can still play” but added it was “hard work.”


  • “I’ve had quite a lot of pain over the last year. It started with lower back pain, and turned into what they call peripheral neuropathy.”
  • “[It’s] hard work to play the guitar and I’ve had to come to terms with the fact that it will not improve.”


In 2013, Clapton was forced to cancel several tour dates because of back pain. In the interviews, he likened the pain to “electric shocks going down your leg”. Read more at

Fortunately, there are manual bodywork therapies available that have improved the outcome of peripheral neuropathy.  It would be great to see Eric Clapton playing the guitar again, pain-free.