Autonomic neuropathy occurs when the nerves that control involuntary bodily functions are damaged. This may affect blood pressure, temperature control, digestion, bladder function and even sexual function.The nerve damage interferes with the messages sent between the brain and other organs and areas of the autonomic nervous system, such as the heart, blood vessels and sweat glands.
While diabetes is generally the most common cause of autonomic neuropathy, other health conditions — even an infection — may be to blame. Some medications also may cause nerve damage. Symptoms and treatment will vary based on which nerves are damaged.