What is the main difference between peripheral neuropathy and spinal stenosis?

Several. Peripheral neuropathy tends start in the toes, moving up the limbs with worsening, and in a circumferential distribution. Spinal stenosis symptoms typically start at the back/buttock, radiates down the limb, in a band-like pattern(sciatica), and worsens with extension of the spine.
Cause. Peripheral neuropathy is related to compression of peripheral (in arm or leg) nerve or due to an underlying issue like diabetes, vitamin deficiencies, toxic substance exposure, traction or fracture or crush injury, aging, chemotherapy etc while spinal stenosis occurs due to compression of spinal cord/thecal sac/spinal nerves within the spine. Neuropathy pain tends to be constant & not positional.

Related Questions

Mri shows disc bulges in upper and lower spine and spinal stenosis in both areas. Told before I have peripheral neuropathy. Are they related?

Possibly. Stenosis can cause impingment on peripheral nerves, need further eval by a neurologist or spine doc. Read more...
Not related . Spinal stenosis affects the central nerves of the spine whereas peripheral neuropathy affects the distal nerves of the arms and legs. The later is frequently associated with diabetes. This difference can be determined by a qualified neurologist with an emg/ncv study. Symptomatic spinal stenosis can be treated with surgery whereas peripheral neuropathy cannot. Read more...