Distribution by Scientific Domains
Distribution within Medical Sciences

Kinds of Neurologists

  • child neurologist
  • general neurologist
  • paediatric neurologist

  • Selected Abstracts

    Toward a more efficient and effective neurologic examination for the 21st century,

    T. H. Glick
    Practice pressures and quality improvement require greater efficiency and effectiveness in the neurologic examination. I hypothesized that certain ,marginal' elements of the examination rarely add value and that ,core' elements, exemplified by the plantar response (Babinski), are too often poorly performed or interpreted. I analyzed 100 published, neurologic clinicopathologic conferences (CPCs) and 180 ambulatory neurologic consultations regarding 13 hypothetically ,marginal' examination components (including ,frontal' reflexes, olfaction, jaw strength, corneal reflex, etc.); also, 120 exams on medical inpatients with neurologic problems, recording definitive errors. I surveyed the recalled practices of 24 non-neurologists and reviewed the literature for relevant data or guidance. In the CPCs the ,marginal' elements of the examination were rarely provided, requested, or used diagnostically, nor did they contribute in the 180 ambulatory consultations. In the chart review errors and omissions dominated testing of plantar responses, with missed Babinski signs in 14% of all cases and 77% of patients with Babinski signs. House officers harbored unrealistic expectations for performance of ,marginal' examination elements. Most textbooks omit detailed guidance (and none cite evidence) on achieving greater efficiency. Exams should be streamlined, while improving ,core' skills. Neurologists should apply evidence to update the exam taught to students and non-neurologists. [source]

    Ocular complications of neurological therapy

    S. Hadjikoutis
    Treatments used for several neurological conditions may adversely affect the eye. Vigabatrin-related retinal toxicity leads to a visual field defect. Optic neuropathy may result from ethambutol and isoniazid, and from radiation therapy. Posterior subcapsular cataract is associated with systemic corticosteroids. Transient refractive error changes may follow treatment with acetazolamide or topiramate, and corneal deposits and keratitis with amandatine. Intraocular pressure can be elevated in susceptible individuals by anticholinergic drugs, including oxybutynin, tolterodine, benzhexol, propantheline, atropine and amitriptyline, and also by systemic corticosteroids and by topiramate. Nystagmus, diplopia and extraocular muscle palsies can occur with antiepileptic drugs, particularly phenytoin and carbamazepine. Ocular neuromyotonia can follow parasellar radiation. Congenital ocular malformations can result from in utero exposure to maternally prescribed sodium valproate, phenytoin and carbamazepine. Neurologists must be aware of potential ocular toxicity of these drugs, and appropriately monitor for potential adverse events. [source]

    Migraine Disability Awareness Campaign in Asia: Migraine Assessment for Prophylaxis

    HEADACHE, Issue 9 2008
    Shuu-Jiun Wang MD
    Objectives., This study aimed to survey the headache diagnoses and consequences among outpatients attending neurological services in 8 Asian countries. Methods., This survey recruited patients who consulted neurologists for the first time with the chief complaint of headache. Patients suffering from headaches for 15 or more days per month were excluded. Patients answered a self-administered questionnaire, and their physicians independently completed a separate questionnaire. In this study, the migraine diagnosis given by the neurologists was used for analysis. The headache symptoms collected in the physician questionnaire were based on the diagnostic criteria of migraine proposed by the International Classification of Headache Disorders, second edition (ICHD-2). Results., A total of 2782 patients (72% females; mean age 38.1 ± 15.1 years) finished the study. Of them, 66.6% of patients were diagnosed by the neurologists to have migraine, ranging from 50.9% to 85.8% across different countries. Taken as a group, 41.4% of those patients diagnosed with migraine had not been previously diagnosed to have migraine prior to this consultation. On average, patients with migraine had 4.9 severe headaches per month with 65% of patients missing school, work, or household chores. Most (87.5%) patients with migraine took medications for acute treatment. Thirty-six percent of the patients had at least one emergency room consultation within one year. Only 29.2% were on prophylactic medications. Neurologists recommended pharmacological prophylaxis in 68.2% of patients not on preventive treatment. In comparison, migraine prevalence was the highest with ICHD-2 "any migraine" (ie, migraine with or without migraine and probable migraine) (73.3%) followed by neurologist-diagnosed migraine (66.6%) and ICHD-2 "strict migraine" (ie, migraine with or without aura only) (51.3%). About 88.6% patients with neurologist-diagnosed migraine fulfilled ICHD-2 any migraine but only 67.1% fulfilled the criteria of ICHD-2 strict migraine. Conclusions., Migraine is the most common headache diagnosis in neurological services in Asia. The prevalence of migraine was higher in countries with higher referral rates of patients to neurological services. Migraine remains under-diagnosed and under-treated in this region even though a high disability was found in patients with migraine. Probable migraine was adopted into the migraine diagnostic spectrum by neurologists in this study. [source]

    Dementia and Alzheimer's Disease Incidence in Relationship to Cardiovascular Disease in the Cardiovascular Health Study Cohort

    Anne B. Newman MD
    Objectives: To determine whether coronary artery disease, peripheral arterial disease (PAD), or noninvasive markers of cardiovascular disease (CVD) predict the onset of dementia and Alzheimer's disease (AD). Design: Longitudinal cohort study. Setting: Four U.S. communities. Participants: Men and women (N=3,602) with a brain magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scan but no dementia were followed for 5.4 years. Participants with stroke were excluded. Measurements: Neurologists and psychiatrists classified incident cases of dementia and subtype using neuropsychological tests, examination, medical records and informant interviews. CVD was defined at the time of the MRI scan. Noninvasive tests of CVD were assessed within 1 year of the MRI. Apolipoprotein E allele status, age, race, sex, education, Mini-Mental State Examination score, and income were assessed as potential confounders. Results: The incidence of dementia was higher in those with prevalent CVD, particularly in the subgroup with PAD. The rate of AD was 34.4 per 1,000 person-years for those with a history of CVD, versus 22.2 per 1,000 person-years without a history of CVD (adjusted hazard ratio (HR)=1.3, 95% confidence interval (CI)=1.0,1.7). Rates of AD were highest in those with PAD (57.4 vs 23.7 per 100 person-years, adjusted HR=2.4, 95% CI=1.4,4.2). Results were similar with further exclusion of those with vascular dementia from the AD group. A gradient of increasing risk was noted with the extent of vascular disease. Conclusion: Older adults with CVD other than stroke had a higher risk of dementia and AD than did those without CVD. The risk was highest in people with PAD, suggesting that extensive peripheral atherosclerosis is a risk factor for AD. [source]

    Postoperative management of subthalamic nucleus stimulation for Parkinson's disease

    Paul Krack MD
    Abstract The postoperative neurologic management of patients with deep brain stimulation (DBS) of the subthalamic nucleus (STN) for Parkinson' s disease is a complex dynamic process that involves a progressive increase in stimulation intensity and a parallel decrease in antiparkinsonian medication while assessing the interactions of both treatments. Neurologists responsible for postoperative management of patients receiving STN DBS must have expert knowledge of the electroanatomy of the subthalamic area and be familiar with the medical treatment of motor and nonmotor symptoms, including the management of long-term complications of levodopa treatment. Neurosurgeons who perform DBS need to understand the principles that guide the postoperative adaptation of treatment. This article defines guidelines for setting stimulation parameters, adapting drugs and managing adverse effects. © 2002 Movement Disorder Society [source]

    NerveCenter: Neurologists weigh in on the FDA's new transparency task force

    ANNALS OF NEUROLOGY, Issue 2 2009
    Article first published online: 9 SEP 200
    No abstract is available for this article. [source]

    Abnormal vestibular responses to vertical head motion in cerebellar ataxia

    ANNALS OF NEUROLOGY, Issue 2 2008
    Ke Liao MS
    Falls pose an important problem to neurologists caring for patients with cerebellar disorders. Normal human gait is characterized by prominent up-and-down linear head movements (vertical translations). Thus, we asked whether patients with cerebellar gait ataxia showed abnormal responses of otolithic vestibuloocular reflexes to this motion. Compared with healthy subjects, all cerebellar patients showed impaired otolith-ocular responses. Neurologists often test the rotational vestibuloocular reflexes in cerebellar patients, but our results indicate that vestibular responses to vertical linear motion are severely affected. Impairment of the corresponding otolith-spinal reflexes may contribute substantially to falls. Ann Neurol 2008 [source]

    Neuropsychological profile of children with subcortical band heterotopia

    Aim, Subcortical band heterotopia (SBH) or ,double cortex' is a malformation of cortical development resulting from impaired neuronal migration. So far, research has focused on the neurological, neuroimaging, and genetic correlates of SBH. More recently, clinical reports and small sample studies have documented neuropsychological dysfunction in patients with this malformation. This study aimed to characterize further the phenotype of patients with SBH by describing the neuropsychological profiles of children. Method, Seven children (six females) aged 4 to 15 years were assessed for cognitive functioning (intellectual ability, processing speed, attention, working memory) and academic achievement (reading, spelling, arithmetic). Parents completed questionnaires examining their child's social skills and problem behaviours. Magnetic resonance images (MRI) conducted for routine clinical follow-up were coded by a paediatric neurologist. Genetic and seizure history were obtained from medical records. Results, There was variation in the neurological, neuroimaging, and genetic presentation of children in the sample. Impairments were observed in all areas of neuropsychological functioning examined. Intellectual ability was generally within the ,extremely low' range (full-scale IQ 44,74; performance IQ 45,72; verbal IQ 57,80). Generalized impairments in cognitive skills were typical, with severe impairments (scores greater than 2SD below the test mean) reported in processing speed, working memory, and arithmetic. Impairments in academic, social, and behavioural functioning were less generalized. No clear relationship between neuroimaging and neuropsychological impairments was found. Interpretation, Children with SBH demonstrate cognitive, academic, social, and behavioural problems, with the greatest difficulties in processing speed and complex cognitive skills. [source]

    Clinical characteristics of language regression in children

    Sy Wilson MD;
    The spectrum of language regression in childhood is incompletely understood. To describe the features of this disorder more fully, we reviewed the records of 196 consecutive children (143 males and 53 females) with language regression or perceived plateau evaluated between 1988 and 1994 by a child neurologist. Mean age at regression was 21.2 months and the mean interval to referral was 34.8 months. A trigger for the regression was identified in 74 of the children (38%) and was associated with a more rapid regression. Mean age at follow-up was 64 months (SD 55). Seventy per cent of the children became nonverbal, and 75% were cognitively impaired. Language regression was associated with a more global autistic regression in 93% of children. There was a history of seizures in 15% of the children. Some recovery occurred in 61% but only one child recovered fully. Improvement was more likely in the 49% who were entirely developmentally normal before the regression. We conclude that language regression in childhood is a serious disorder with significant long-term morbidity. [source]

    The maestro don Gonzalo Rodríguez-Lafora

    EPILEPSIA, Issue 6 2008
    Anish S. Nanduri
    Summary Gonzalo Rodríguez-Lafora (1886,1971) was an influential Spanish neurologist, and has been called the last of Cajal's great Spanish disciples. Of course, he is best known now for describing (in 1911) the intracytoplasmic inclusion bodies in "Lafora disease." In total, he published ,200 papers covering a wide range of subjects in neurology, psychiatry, and neuropathology. He made seminal contributions not only to the clinical and scientific literature but also to the training of many noted disciples who paid him due homage as a true "maestro." Throughout his intellectual endeavors, Lafora manifested a singular purpose and intensity and a burning devotion to scientific honesty. [source]

    Usefulness of the Head-Upright Tilt Test for Distinguishing Syncope and Epilepsy in Children

    EPILEPSIA, Issue 6 2001
    J. Eirís-Puñal
    Summary: ,Purpose: Episodic loss of consciousness in children, whether or not associated with hypertonia or short-duration clonic movements, presents a diagnostic challenge to the pediatrician and child neurologist. We provide some evidence of the usefulness of the head-upright tilt test for investigating the causes of transient loss of consciousness in children, and for distinguishing between syncope, convulsive syncope, and epilepsy. Methods: We studied nine children previously diagnosed as epileptic on the basis of compatible clinical events and epileptiform findings in routine EEGs who were treated over the long term with antiepileptic drugs, but whose clinical records suggested syncope or convulsive syncope rather than epilepsy on reevaluation. All subjects underwent head-upright tilt testing. Results: The tilt-test result was positive in all nine cases, with the patients reporting the same symptoms as in the previously considered epileptic attacks. Conclusions: Inadequate histories and misuse/overinterpretation of EEG results often lead to misdiagnosis of epilepsy in children. The head-upright tilt test is a useful and reliable diagnostic technique, allowing syncopal events to be induced and evaluated under controlled conditions. In a subset of patients, it may help to distinguish epilepsy from simple or convulsive syncope. [source]

    Cortical Dysplasias and Epilepsy: Multi-Institutional Survey in Japan

    EPILEPSIA, Issue 2000
    Morimi Shimada
    Purpose: Cortical dysplasia (CD) is a major brain malformation causing intractable epilcpsy. Neurosurgery now succcssfully controls some intractable epilepsies associated with CD. In this study, thc incidence 11 epilepsy and thc frequency of seizurcs were analyzed in different types 01 CD. Methods: This study, supported by a rcse;lrch grant from the Ministry of Health and Wellare of Japan, is part of a research project on the clinical presentation and pathogcnesis of brain dysgenesis. Questionnaires regarding the type of CD, family and pact historics, clinical signs and symptoms and their severity were distributed to I200 institutions comprising child neurologists or pediatricians. CDs werc classified into following 6 types; lissencephaly (agyria-pachygyria spcctrum), cobblestone lissencephaly, polymicrogyria including schizencephaly and hilateral perisylvian syndrome, diffuse heterotopia, focal heterotopia, and hemiinegalencephaly. All patients who had been diagnoscd as CD either by MRI, CT, autopsy or histological cxamination at or after surgical treatment wcre included. Diagnosis of CD by CT or MRI was mainly made by a radiologist, child neurologist, or pediatrician. Double classification was corrected. Epilepsy was classified according to criteria of the ILEA. Seizure frcquencies wcre recorded. Results: A total or 676 cases from 328 institutions was availablc, and distributed as follows: 277 of lissencephaly, I48 of cobblestone lissencephaly (10 cases of Walkcr-Warburg syndrome and 138 Fukuyaina type congcnital muscular dystrophy), I30 of polymicrogyria, 40 of diffuse heterotopia (24 subcortical band hetcrotopia and I6 perivcntricular nodular hcterotopia), 37 of focal heterotopia, and 44 of hemimegalencephaly. In 130 cases of polymicrogyria, 13 cases of bilatcral perisylvian syndrome, and 38 cases of schizencephaly were includcd. Of 667 cases available for study, 500 (75.0%) had epilepsy in which generalized epilepsy including West and Lcnnox syndromes comprised 54.1 % and localization-related epilepsies comprised 46.7%. Thc frequency of seizures could be ascertained in 455 cases, of which 36.0% had daily seizures, and I I .4%) had more than onc seizure per week. The incidencc of epilepsy in cach type of CD was as follows: 86% inlissencephaly, 50% in cobblestone lissencephaly (patients with WalkcrWarburg syndrome had epilepsy in 90%, whercas those with Fukuyama type congenital muscular dystrophy had epilepsy in 46.7%), 71.3% in polymicrogyria, 77.5% in diffusc hetcrotopia (9 1.7% in subcortical band heterotopia and 56.2% in periventricular nodular heterotopia), 74.3% in focal heterotopia, and 93.2% in hemimegalcncephaly. Conclusion: As recent investigations have reported, this study confirmed the high incidence of intractable cpilepsy in CDs. Epilepsy was more prevalcnt in cases with subcortical heterotopia than i n cascs with periventricular nodular helcrotopia. Thc incidcnce or epilepsy was also higher in the focal hcterotopias located subcortically than those dccper in white matter or in the periventricular region. Thcse differences in incidence of epilepsy depending on the location of hcterotopia may give somc clues to the nature of epileptogenesis in CD. [source]

    Empirical evidence of underutilization of referrals for epilepsy surgery evaluation

    P. De Flon
    Background:, Epilepsy surgery is a treatment that can cure patients with intractable epilepsy. This study investigates whether referrals for epilepsy surgery evaluation are underutilized. Methods:, Patients with epilepsy aged 18,60 years were identified in a computerized registry held by public health care providers in a Swedish county using ICD codes. Clinical data and data on referral status for epilepsy surgery were obtained from the patients' medical records. Potential candidates for epilepsy surgery evaluation were identified using pre-specified criteria. Obstacles for referral were analysed by comparing clinical data in patients who were considered for referral and those who were not. Appropriateness of non-referral was evaluated against recommendations from the Swedish Council on Technology in Health Care (SBU). Results:, Of 378 patients with epilepsy in the registry, 251 agreed to participate. Of 251, 40 were already referred patients and 48 patients were identified as potential candidates for epilepsy surgery evaluation by study criteria. Referral had been considered but not performed in 15 of the potential candidates. Potential candidates not considered for referral were less likely to have seen a neurologist, to have had an EEG, CT and MRI, and more likely to have cognitive disturbances. Following the recommendations by the SBU, 28 of 48 potential candidates were identified as inappropriately not referred patients. Conclusion:, The number of missed referrals for epilepsy surgery evaluation was estimated to be 60 per 100 000 inhabitants. Several important obstacles were found for not referring patients for epilepsy surgery evaluation. [source]

    Revascularization in acute ischaemic stroke using the penumbra system: the first single center experience

    I. Q. Grunwald
    Background and purpose:, This is the first single center experience illustrating the effectiveness of the penumbra system (PS) in the treatment of large vessel occlusive disease in the arena of acute ischaemic stroke. The PS is an innovative mechanical thrombectomy device, employed in the revascularization of large cerebral vessel occlusions in patients via the utilization of an aspiration platform. Methods:, This is a prospective, non-randomized controlled trial evaluating the clinical and functional outcome in 29 patients with acute intra-cranial occlusions consequent to mechanical thrombectomy by the PS either as mono-therapy or as an adjunct to current standard of care. Patients were evaluated by a neurologist and treated by our in house interventional neuro-radiologists. Primary end-points were revascularization of the occluded target vessel to TIMI grade 2 or 3 and neurological outcome as measured by an improvement in the NIH Stroke Scale (NIHSS) score after the procedure. Results:, Complete revascularization (TIMI 3) was achieved in 21/29 (72.4%) of patients. Partial revascularization (TIMI 2) was established in 4/29 (13.8%) of patients. Revascularization failed in four (13.8%) patients. Nineteen (19) patients (65.5%) had at least a four-point improvement in NIHSS scores. Modified Rankin scale scores of ,2 were seen in 37.9% of patients. There were no device-related adverse events. Symptomatic intra-cranial hemorrhage occurred in 7% of patients. Conclusions:, The PS has the potential of exercising a significant impact in the interventional treatment of ischaemic stroke in the future. [source]

    EFNS guideline on diagnosis and management of limb girdle muscular dystrophies

    F. Norwood
    The limb girdle muscular dystrophies (LGMD) are termed as such as they share the characteristic feature of muscle weakness predominantly affecting the shoulder and pelvic girdles; their classification has been completely revised in recent years because of elucidation of many of the underlying genetic and protein alterations in the various subtypes. An array of diagnostic measures is possible but with varying ease of use and availability. Several aspects of muscle cell function appear to be involved in the causation of muscle pathology. These cellular variations may confer some specific clinical features thus permitting recognition of the LGMD subtype and hence directing appropriate levels of monitoring and intervention. Despite an extensive literature on the individual limb girdle dystrophies, these publications may be impenetrable for the general neurologist in this increasingly complex field. The proposed guidelines suggest an approach to the diagnosis and monitoring of the limb girdle dystrophies in a manner accessible to general neurologists. [source]

    EFNS task force on management of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis: guidelines for diagnosing and clinical care of patients and relatives

    An evidence-based review with good practice points
    Despite being one of the most devastating diseases known, there is little evidence for diagnosing and managing patients with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS). Although specific therapy is lacking, correct early diagnosis and introduction of symptomatic and specific therapy can have a profound influence on the care and quality of life of the patient and may increase survival time. This document addresses the optimal clinical approach to ALS. The final literature search was performed in the spring of 2005. Consensus recommendations are given graded according to the EFNS guidance regulations. Where there was lack of evidence but consensus was clear we have stated our opinion as good practice points. People affected with possible ALS should be examined as soon as possible by an experienced neurologist. Early diagnosis should be pursued and a number of investigations should be performed with high priority. The patient should be informed of the diagnosis by a consultant with a good knowledge of the patient and the disease. Following diagnosis, the patient and relatives should receive regular support from a multidisciplinary care team. Medication with riluzole should be initiated as early as possible. PEG is associated with improved nutrition and should be inserted early. The operation is hazardous in patients with vital capacity <50%. Non-invasive positive pressure ventilation improves survival and quality of life but is underused. Maintaining the patients ability to communicate is essential. During the entire course of the disease, every effort should be made to maintain patient autonomy. Advance directives for palliative end of life care are important and should be fully discussed early with the patient and relatives respecting the patients social and cultural background. [source]

    The position of the neurologist in neuro-oncology1

    W. Grisold
    Neuro-oncology is a growing new subspeciality with a strong interdisciplinary character. This position paper explains the role of neurology in the multidisciplinary field of neurosurgeons, radiotherapists and general oncologists, dealing with neuro-oncological patients. The paper delineates the varied spectrum of the field of neuro-oncology which expands from primary brain tumours, to metastatic and non-metastatic effects of systemic cancer on the central and peripheral nervous system, neurotoxicity due to cancer treatment and issues of quality of life. It has been written by the scientific neuro-oncology panel of the European Federation of Neurological Societies (EFNS) to delineate the situation of neuro-oncology in Europe, and facilitate the understanding and implementation of this subspeciality in the future. [source]

    The future of magnetic resonance-based techniques in neurology

    European Federation of Neurological Societies Task Force
    Magnetic resonance techniques have become increasingly important in neurology for defining: 1,brain, spinal cord and peripheral nerve or muscle structure; 2,pathological changes in tissue structures and properties; and 3,dynamic patterns of functional activation of the brain. New applications have been driven in part by advances in hardware, particularly improvements in magnet and gradient coil design. New imaging strategies allow novel approaches to contrast with, for example, diffusion imaging, magnetization transfer imaging, perfusion imaging and functional magnetic resonance imaging. In parallel with developments in hardware and image acquisition have been new approaches to image analysis. These have allowed quantitative descriptions of the image changes to be used for a precise, non-invasive definition of pathology. With the increasing capabilities and specificity of magnetic resonance techniques it is becoming more important that the neurologist is intimately involved in both the selection of magnetic resonance studies for patients and their interpretation. There is a need for considerably improved access to magnetic resonance technology, particularly in the acute or intensive care ward and in the neurosurgical theatre. This report illustrates several key developments. The task force concludes that magnetic resonance imaging is a major clinical tool of growing significance and offers recommendations for maximizing the potential future for magnetic resonance techniques in neurology. [source]

    A two-fold difference in the age-adjusted prevalences of Parkinson's disease between the island of Als and the Faroe Islands

    L. Wermuth
    With the aim of comparing the previously found high prevalence of idiopathic Parkinson's disease (PD) in the Faroe Islands with the prevalence of PD in an area of Denmark, we used the same case-finding methods for case ascertainment and the same strict criteria to diagnose PD on the island of Als. During the last year before the prevalence date (1 January 1998), we found in various registries from pharmacies, hospital, private neurologist and general practioners 121 patients with suspected Parkinsonism out of 56 839 inhabitants on the island of Als. After exclusion of those who had other diseases, a total of 79 patients were left for further examinations. Among these we found 58 with PD. The overall prevalence of PD was estimated to be 102.0 and the age-adjusted prevalence to be 98.3 per 100 000 persons compared with 187.6 and 209.0 in the Faroe Islands. Compared with the previous results from the Faroe Islands (prevalence date 1 July 1995) we found an even lower mean age at onset of PD symptoms and at onset of treatment, a lower proportion of definite PD and a lower average dose of levodopa. We therefore conclude that the two-fold higher prevalence in the Faroe Islands than on the island of Als was not due to an early diagnosis and a higher ascertainment of cases with mild PD, which was suggested as being one possible explanation for our previous finding of a high prevalence of PD in the Faroe Islands. [source]

    Migraine in Adolescents: Validation of a Screening Questionnaire

    HEADACHE, Issue 2 2009
    Luca Valentinis MD
    Background., Few studies in adolescents deal with the level of agreement between questionnaire and interview information in relation to headache symptoms. Objective., To evaluate the validity of a self-administered questionnaire on headache for use in epidemiological studies of Italian high school students. Methods., The questionnaire incorporated all items required for diagnosing migraine according to the criteria from the 2004 International Classification of Headache Disorders. The migraine diagnoses obtained from questionnaires were validated against the gold standard diagnoses by a headache specialist. Results., Out of 104 students answering the questionnaires, 93 (89.4%) participated in extensive semi-structured interviews by a neurologist. The chance-corrected agreement rate (kappa) was 0.66, which is considered good. The questionnaire-based migraine diagnosis had a sensitivity of 67.3%, specificity of 100%, positive predictive value of 100%, and negative predictive value of 73.3%. Conclusions., The results indicate that our self-administered questionnaire may be an acceptable instrument in determining the prevalence of migraine sufferers in the northeast Italy adolescent population, useful in identifying subjects with "definite" migraine. [source]

    Surgical treatment of migraine headaches.

    HEADACHE, Issue 3 2003
    B Guyuron
    Plast Reconstr Surg. 2002 Jun;109(7):2183-2189 This prospective study was conducted to investigate the role of removal of corrugator supercilii muscles, transection of the zygomaticotemporal branch of the trigeminal nerve, and temple soft-tissue repositioning in the treatment of migraine headaches. Using the criteria set forth by the International Headache Society, the research team's neurologist evaluated patients with moderate to severe migraine headaches, to confirm the diagnosis. Subsequently, the patients completed a comprehensive migraine headaches questionnaire and the team's plastic surgeon injected 25 units of botulinum toxin type A (Botox) into each corrugator supercilii muscle. The patients were asked to maintain an accurate diary of their migraine headaches and to complete a monthly questionnaire documenting pertinent information related to their headaches. Patients in whom the injection of Botox resulted in complete elimination of the migraine headaches then underwent resection of the corrugator supercilii muscles. Those who experienced only significant improvement underwent transection of the zygomaticotemporal branch of the trigeminal nerve with repositioning of the temple soft tissues, in addition to removal of the corrugator supercilii muscles. Once again, patients kept a detailed postoperative record of their headaches. Of the 29 patients included in the study, 24 were women and five were men, with an average age of 44.9 years (range, 24 to 63 years). Twenty-four of 29 patients (82.8 percent, p < 0.001) reported a positive response to the injection of Botox, 16 (55.2 percent, p < 0.001) observed complete elimination, eight (27.6 percent, p < 0.04) experienced significant improvement (at least 50 percent reduction in intensity or severity), and five (17.2 percent, not significant) did not notice a change in their migraine headaches. Twenty-two of the 24 patients who had a favorable response to the injection of Botox underwent surgery, and 21 (95.5 percent, p < 0.001) observed a postoperative improvement. Ten patients (45.5 percent, p < 0.01) reported elimination of migraine headaches and 11 patients (50.0 percent, p < 0.004) noted a considerable improvement. For the entire surgical group, the average intensity of the migraine headaches reduced from 8.9 to 4.1 on an analogue scale of 1 to 10, and the frequency of migraine headaches changed from an average of 5.2 per month to an average of 0.8 per month. For the group who only experienced an improvement, the intensity fell from 9.0 to 7.5 and the frequency was reduced from 5.6 to 1.0 per month. Only one patient (4.5 percent, not significant) did not notice any change. The follow-up ranged from 222 to 494 days, the average being 347 days. In conclusion, this study confirms the value of surgical treatment of migraine headaches, inasmuch as 21 of 22 patients benefited significantly from the surgery. It is also evident that injection of Botox is an extremely reliable predictor of surgical outcome. Comment: Many small placebo-controlled studies and much anecdotal literature suggests that botulinum toxin may be effective in prevention of migraine, perhaps to the same extent as conventional prophylactic treatment. Larger, randomized clinical trials are underway to resolve this issue. In the meantime, those who believe in the effectiveness of botulinum toxin prophylaxis argue about how it works, that is whether its antinociceptive properties are due to peripheral effects, central or presynaptic effects, or both. Dr. Guyuron's group favors the idea that botulinum toxin interrupts a reflex arc between the central nervous system (CNS) and peripheral musculature, and that after establishing efficacy by low dose botulinum injection in the corrugator supercilii muscles, surgical resection of these muscles results in prolonged and effective prophylaxis. The idea is radical but intriguing and should not be dismissed out of hand. However, a trial is necessary in which both the botulinum toxin injections are blinded with vehicle, and the study of the surgery involves a sham surgery control group with extended long-term follow-up, before these forms of prophylaxis can be recommended to patients. SJT [source]

    Prevalence of Head Trauma in Patients With Difficult Headache: The North Norway Headache Study

    HEADACHE, Issue 1 2003
    Svein Ivar Bekkelund MD
    Objective.,To test whether chronic headache (>3 days/week) is more prevalent than episodic headache (<3 days/week) in patients with a previous history of significant head trauma. Method.,We included 903 consecutive patients referred to a specialist center for headache during a period of 2 years. As the main parameter, we selected self-reported history of previous significant head trauma defined as loss of consciousness or hospitalization due to head trauma. Results.,One hundred eighty-nine out of 903 patients with difficult headache referred to a neurologist had a previous history of head trauma (21%). We identified 297 patients with headache 3 days or more per week (33%). Of these patients with chronic headache, 68 (23%) reported previous significant head trauma compared with 121/714 (17%) in other patients with headache (P = .18). Shorter length of education was associated with chronic headache; however, age, sex, or specific headache syndromes such as migraine or tension headache were not related to chronicity. Conclusion.,Although the incidence of previous head trauma was prevalent in this highly selected group of patients with headache, such a history was not a predictor of chronicity. [source]

    Use of the internet and of the NHS direct telephone helpline for medical information by a cognitive function clinic population

    A. J. Larner
    Abstract Background Internet websites and medical telephone helplines are relatively new and huge resources of medical information (,cybermedicine' and ,telemedicine', respectively) accessible to the general public without prior recourse to a doctor. Study Objectives To measure use of internet websites and of the NHS Direct telephone helpline as sources of medical information by patients and their families and/or carers attending a cognitive function clinic. Design and Setting Consecutive patients seen by one consultant neurologist over a six-month period in the Cognitive Function Clinic at the Walton Centre for Neurology and Neurosurgery, a regional neuroscience centre in Liverpool, UK. Results More than 50% of patients and families/carers had internet access; 27% had accessed relevant information, but none volunteered this. 82% expressed interest in, or willingness to access, websites with relevant medical information if these were suggested by the clinic doctor. Although 61% had heard of the NHS Direct telephone helpline, only 10% of all patients had used this service and few calls related to the reason for attendance at the Cognitive Function Clinic. Conclusions Internet access and use is common in a cognitive function clinic population. Since information from internet websites may shape health beliefs and expectations of patients and families/carers, appropriately or inappropriately, it may be important for the clinic doctor to inquire about these searches. Since most would use websites suggested by the doctor, a readiness to provide addresses for appropriate sites may prove helpful. Copyright © 2003 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. [source]

    National survey to assess current practices in the diagnosis and management of young people with dementia

    Rebecca Cordery
    Abstract Background The Royal College of Psychiatrists has recommended that old age psychiatrists may be best placed to take responsibility for service provision for younger people with dementia. There are concerns however, that if referral between specialists, particularly neurologists and old age psychiatrists, is incomplete, patients may be under investigated or inappropriately followed up. Objectives We have assessed the current level of referral between these specialists, how each investigates their patients and details of follow up care. Method We conducted a postal survey of all consultant neurologists and consultant old age psychiatrists in the UK with an overall response rate of 64%. Results and Conclusions The ideal of full collaboration between old age psychiatrists and neurologists is not achieved. Young patients may be under investigated if managed solely by an old age psychiatrist and may not receive adequate follow up services if managed solely by a neurologist. Copyright © 2002 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. [source]

    Estimation of psycholeptic and psychoanaleptic medicine use in an adult general population sample using the Anatomical Therapeutic Chemical classification

    U. John
    Abstract Little is known about psycholeptic and psychoanaleptic medicine (PM) use in the general population. This study presents prevalence data about PM use. The sample included 4310 individuals aged 20,79 from a general population health examination in a northern German area (participation proportion: 68.8%; Study of Health in Pomerania, SHIP). Medicines taken during the past seven days were assessed from the medicine packages or self-reports and classified according to the Anatomical Therapeutic Chemical (ATC) classification developed by the World Health Organization. In total, 6.3% of the sample reported PM intake, 8.7% of the women and 4.7% of the men. During the past 12 months prior to the health examination, 49.2% of the individuals with PM use consulted a general practitioner but not a neurologist or a psychiatrist. Among the study participants with PM use, 88.8% had one or more mental disorders during lifetime according to a screening questionnaire. It is concluded that considerable proportions of individuals with current PM use exist although lower than may be expected on the basis of the number of individuals with mental disorder in the general population. Copyright © 2008 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. [source]

    Incidence and Predictors of Periprocedural Cerebrovascular Accident in Patients Undergoing Catheter Ablation of Atrial Fibrillation

    Background: Cerebrovascular accident (CVA) is a serious complication of catheter ablation of atrial fibrillation (AF). The incidence and clinical predictors of periprocedural CVA in patients undergoing AF ablation are not fully understood. Methods: This study included 721 cases (age 57 ± 11 years; 23% female; 345 persistent AF) in 579 consecutive patients referred for AF ablation. Periprocedural CVA was defined as onset of a new neurologic deficit that occurred anytime between the start of the procedure and 30 days after the AF ablation, and was confirmed by a neurologist. Cranial imaging with CT and/or MRI was performed in each case. Patients were anticoagulated with warfarin for at least 4 weeks pre- and immediately postprocedure and were bridged with enoxaparin. Transesophageal echocardiography was performed within 24 hours prior to ablation in all cases. Results: Periprocedural CVA occurred in 10 of 721 cases (1.4%). The risk of periprocedural CVA did not vary significantly during the course of the study. Among these 10 patients (age 62 ± 11 years; 1 female; 5 persistent AF), 6 manifested neurological deficits within 24 hours, 3 after 24,48 hours, and 1 patient had a CVA 6 days following AF ablation despite a therapeutic INR level. All CVAs were ischemic. Five patients had residual deficits after 30 days. Four of 43 patients (9.3%) with a prior history of CVA had periprocedural CVA. Periprocedural CVA occurred in 0.3%, 1.0%, and 4.7% of patients with CHADS2 scores of 0, 1, and , 2 (P < 0.001). In 2 separate multivariate analyses, a CHADS2 score , 2 (OR 7.1, P = 0.02) and history of CVA (OR 9.5, P < 0.01) remained independent predictors of periprocedural CVA. Conclusions: Despite periprocedural anticoagulation and transesophageal echocardiography, we found a 1.4% incidence of periprocedural CVA in AF ablation patients. A CHADS2 score , 2 and a history of CVA are independent predictors of CVA after AF ablation. The CVA risk is low in patients with CHADS2 score of 0. [source]

    Evidence for a causal association between oral polio vaccine and transverse myelitis: A case history and review of the Literature

    Heath Kelly
    Abstract: A 6-month-old boy developed transverse myelitis 7 days after the receipt of oral polio vaccine (OPV). A paediatric neurologist confirmed the diagnosis when the boy was aged 9 years. The boy had received his first scheduled OPV at the age of 4 months and had developed immunity to serotypes 1 and 2 but not to serotype 3. A poliovirus type 3 was isolated from stool and throat specimens collected from the boy in the first 2 days after symptom onset. This was shown, in a World Health Organization accredited laboratory, to be a vaccine strain by nucleic acid probe hybridiztion and enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay. The boy subsequently developed immunity to poliovirus serotype 3. It is accepted that poliovirus infection can present occasionally as transverse myelitis. This is estimated to occur in 1:125,1:800 cases. It is also accepted that OPV can cause vaccine-associated paralytic polio with a frequency of approximately one case per 2.5 million doses of OPV distributed. It seems feasible therefore that OPV could cause transverse myelitis with a frequency of 1 in 300 million to one in two billion doses distributed. In a 1993 report from the Institute of Medicine of the National Acadamies of the United States pertaining to vaccine safety, theoretical criteria were advanced for the establishment of a causal relationship between a vaccine and a clinical outcome. The clinical history and laboratory results in this case satisfy these criteria, providing plausible evidence for the causal link between OPV and transverse myelitis. [source]

    Abstracts of the 8th Meeting of the Italian Peripheral Nerve Study Group: 24

    M Piatti
    The present study was performed with the aim to compare different clinically-based neurotoxicity scales with a more extended composite scale (Total Neuropathy Scale) already validated in diabetic patients, in order to improve the grading of chemotherapy-induced peripheral neuropathy (CIPN) severity. The features of CIPN were evaluated in a series of women affected by locally advanced squamous cervical carcinoma treated with cisplatin and paclitaxel, based chemotherapy by clinical examination, neurophysiology and quantitative sensory testing of vibration threshold (VDT); the ECOG, Ajani and NCIC-CTC grades were assessed by a neurologist after clinical examination and the TNS was calculated after additional instrumental examination. At the same time, the treating oncologist, who was blinded as regards the results of the neurological examination, assessed the NCIC-CTC sensory neurotoxicity grade. The correlation existing between the different evaluations was evaluated with the Spearman test on a total of 97 visits. Our results indicate for all the neurotoxicity scales commonly used by oncologists and evaluated in this study a significant correlation with TNS; the interexaminer agreement comparison evaluation evidenced that in several cases the neurologist attributed a higher grade in the NCIC-CTC scale than the oncologist, and this discrepancy was mainly due to a different evaluation of the sensory impairment. In conclusion, the TNS can be used to assess effectively the severity of CIPN and the results of this evaluation can be reliably correlated with the oncological grading of sensory peripheral neurotoxicity; the wider range of TNS values, however, can allow a more accurate grading of the sensory impairment, a feature which can improve the estimate of CIPN changes, particularly in clinical trials; finally, the use of standardized methods of examination of the sensory function (e.g. the semiquantitative measure of vibration sensibility using the 128 Hz tuning fork) may reduce the interexaminer disagreement. [source]


    E. Scarpini
    The elderly are a population at high risk of polyneuropathy because there is a correlation between age and impairment of the peripheral nervous system and because the number of agents that can damage peripheral nerves, including chronic systemic disorders and neurotoxic drugs, increases with age. The Italian Longitudinal Study on Aging (ILSA), a multicenter project designed to study age-associated diseases, collected data from 8 Italian municipalities. For this study, the definition of peripheral neuropathy by P.J. Dyck (1982) was used. However, only peripheral neuropathies with distal and symmetrical involvement of lower limbs were considered. Diagnosis was articulated in two phases: Phase 1 or screening, administered to all participants. The criteria were: a) self reported diagnosis; b) presence of at least one neurological symptom; and c) presence of at least one positive test at short neurological evaluation. A validation of the screening instruments was performed. Phase 2 or clinical confirmation by a neurologist, based on: a) review of the clinical records; b) a neurological examination; c) a clinical history of the disease; and, d) when available, EMG, blood and spinal fluid examination, and a sural nerve biopsy. Three diagnostic categories were identified: possible, probable and definite DSNLL. The neuropathy was classified as definite only when confirmation by a positive EMG was available. A random sample of 5632 subjects aged 65,84 years was evaluated. A total number of 337 DSNLL were identified (possible, probable, defined). The prevalence is 6.5% (95% C.I. 5.8,7.2) in men and women; the rates by age, geographic area, and clinical severity are described, and the prevalence in the different groups of diabetic patients and non-diabetic subjects is analyzed. The prevalence obtained in our study is slightly lower than that in a similar recent multicentric study (IGPSG, 1995), but the diagnostic criteria were different. Diabetes is the most common associated disorder with the 20.8% of association, followed by toxic/drug exposure (5% of association). [source]

    Silas Weir Mitchell's essential tremor

    MOVEMENT DISORDERS, Issue 9 2007
    Elan D. Louis MD
    Abstract Silas Weir Mitchell (1829,1914) is recognized as an important American neurologist. Biographers refer in brief to a tremor. The objective of this review was to characterize Mitchell's tremor using handwriting samples, to examine handwriting samples of family members to determine whether this tremor was familial, and study Mitchell's allusions to tremor in personal, scientific, and fictional writings. Primary sources were the Papers of S. Weir Mitchell, College of Physicians of Philadelphia, and Mitchell's scientific and fictional writings. Mitchell's early handwriting was tremor-free yet, by 1873, the writing was tremulous. Handwriting in the 1880s and 1890s shows clear oscillations of moderate-amplitude. By the first decade of the 20th century, his handwriting was virtually illegible. Letters written by two siblings, his mother, and maternal grandfather also reveal tremor. Tremor was not prominent in Mitchell's personal or scientific writings and Mitchell referred to tremor in only 4 of 27 fictional writings In conclusion, Mitchell had a familial action tremor that began when he was in his early 40's and worsened considerably with age. The likely diagnosis was essential tremor. Curiously, Mitchell rarely alluded to tremor in personal writings and tremor was not prominently featured in his scientific or fictional works. © 2007 Movement Disorder Society [source]