What is a Neurologist?
A neurologist is a medical professional who specializes in the study and treatment of disorders that affect the brain and nervous system. The nervous system controls and regulates activity and movement in the body. If the nervous system is not functioning properly, the body cannot function. It is the job of a neurologist to find and correct any problems in the nervous system.
How does a doctor become a Neurologist?
To become a neurologist, a person must complete an undergraduate program and then attend medical school. After four years of medical school, doctors who wish to become neurologists must study neurology for three more years in a residency program and complete at least one year of internship at a clinic, hospital, or another facility.
What types of illnesses do Neurologists treat?
Neurologists treat a variety of diseases, disorders, and injuries that affect the nervous system. Some of the most common include:
- Cerebrovascular disease
- Multiple sclerosis
- Infections of the brain
- Parkinson's disease
- Alzheimer's disease
- Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis
- Spinal cord disorders
- Speech and language disorders
What are the diagnostic tests and procedures ordered by a Neurologist?
Neurologists test for many different illnesses and disorders to make an accurate diagnosis of a patient’s condition. They use numerous diagnostic tests and procedures to help them determine the cause of a patient’s symptoms. These tests include:
- Nerve conduction velocity test
- Evoked potential tests
- Lumbar puncture
- Sleep tests
- Radiology tests
- Laboratory tests
- Genetic tests
What are the different types of Neurologists?
There are several types of neurologists, and each of them works in different areas and with different types of patients. Some of the types of neurologists include:
- Clinical neurologists: Clinical neurologists work in a clinic or hospital and treat the patients that are referred to them.
- Vascular neurologists: Vascular neurologists focus on issues that affect the vascular system, such as strokes and aneurysms.
- Neuromuscular neurologists: Neuromuscular neurologists focus on diseases and problems that affect the muscles in the body.
- Pediatric neurologists: Pediatric neurologists work with children and help treat problems that affect them.
How do Neurologists treat illnesses?
Neurologists treat each problem or illness separately. In some cases, one treatment option is enough, and in others, it takes several treatment methods to help the patient. Some common treatments include:
- Medications: There are many neurology diseases and illnesses that can be treated with medication. Neurologists determine which medications are the best to treat which illnesses.
- Therapy: Some diseases affect the way a person thinks or moves. Therapy can help treat these types of disorders.
- Surgery: In some neurology patients, surgery is the best or only option. While neurologists don’t perform surgeries themselves, they can help prepare patients for surgery and help monitor them and care for them during and after recovery.
When to see a Neurologist?
Knowing when to see a neurologist can be tricky. Some of the most common symptoms of many neurology problems can also mimic other diseases and illness. In many cases, patients are referred to neurologists by their primary care physicians. Some reasons to see a neurologist include:
- Chronic pain
- Movement problems
- Vision problems
- Memory problems
- Sleep problems
American Academy of Neurology.