Our nervous system organises, explains, and connects us to the environment, from sight to scent, walking to speaking.
In-depth discussion of the various neurological disease symptoms is provided by Dr. Soniya Tambe, MD, DM (Neurology), Consultant Neurologist and Epileptologist, Kauvery Hospitals, Electronic City, Bengaluru. Check them right here:
The nervous system is a complex, highly specialized network. From sight to smell and walking to speaking, our nervous system organizes, explains and connects us to the World around us.
Symptoms of neurological disorders are vast, some of the common symptoms are discussed in this article:
- Headaches: Headache is one of the most common neurological symptoms. Any aches above neck are included in this. Causes can be primary headache, where in no etiology found like migraine, tension type headache, cluster headache or secondary headache, that is headache due to high Blood pressure, sinusitis, brain blood clots, brain infections, injury, brain tumors, aneurysms. Symptoms that should lead to immediate medical attention are new onset headache that’s severe and persisting, associated fever, lethargy, double vison, reduced vision, seizures, headache after head injury. Sudden onset worst headache of life can be caused by burst brain aneurysm and it can be life threatening.
- Pain: Pain is unpleasant sensation. Neurogenic pain is caused by damage to nerves. Causes vary from Disc disease, Spondylosis, Multiple sclerosis, Neuropathic of varied etiology. Sometimes chronic pain is caused by fibromyalgia which is a disorder characterized by widespread musculoskeletal pain accompanied by fatigue, sleep, memory and mood issues. Chronic pain can be debilitating, hence early recognition evaluation and treatment on time is important.
- Vertigo: Vertigo is spinning sensation of body. It can be very debilitating. Vertigo is caused by problems in balance system in the body. It’s classified into peripheral vertigo and central vertigo. Peripheral vertigo is triggered by sudden head rotation, lasts short period, episodic, associated with tinnitus in ears or hearing issues, its associated with vomiting.
Central vertigo is caused by problems within brain. Central vertigo is associated with prolonged vertigo, severe difficulty in balance, visual loss, numbness of body, cranial nerve weakness. Sudden onset severe vertigo can be caused by stroke. Hence seeing medical attention is important to rule out sinister causes.
- Seizures: A seizure is a burst of uncontrolled electrical activity between brain cells that causes temporary abnormalities in muscle tone or movements (stiffness, twitching or limpness), behaviors, sensations or states of awareness. Seizure can be a single event due to acute problem like medication, fever or could be recurring events like in epilepsy. There are different types of seizures like focal seizures in which seizure starts in one part of body or generalized seizure in which whole body is involved. Evaluation with Electroencephalogram, MRI brain and clinical details is needed to decide plan of action.
- Paralysis/ Weakness: Fully functional body is extremely important for humans. Weakness in any part of body can have devastation outcomes. Weakness of facial muscles is called facial palsy, weakness of one limb is called monoparesis, weakness of one half of body is called hemiparesis, weakness of both legs is called paraparesis. Sudden onset weakness can be symptom of stroke and needs urgent medical attention to avoid permanent deficits. Other causes are tumors, trauma, degenerative causes like ALS (Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis)infections like poliomyelitis, inflammatory disorders like myositis.
- Memory impairment: Memory loss is a common complaint, especially in older adults. A certain degree of memory loss is a normal part of aging. Symptoms of dementia are getting lost, having difficulty managing finances, difficulties with activities of daily living, leaving the stove on, forgetting the names of close family and friends or problems with language. Dementia is a slowly progressive condition and should be evaluated by a neurologist. While there is no cure, there are medications and therapies that can help manage symptoms.
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