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Seminars in Neurology

Kathleen M Zackowski
Gait and balance deficits are commonly experienced by individuals with a variety of neurologic disorders. These deficits can be particularly frustrating because they often profoundly impact a person's quality of life. The author applies information about gait and balance based on the neurologic examination and summarizes important relationships among common impairment measures of gait and balance deficits. She also provides an interpretation of these relationships to assist the clinician in how to identify and manage gait and balance deficits...
October 2016: Seminars in Neurology
Robert D Gerwin
Myofascial pain syndromes caused by trigger points (TrPs) in muscle are a common cause of local and generalized pain. Trigger points are hyperirritable zones in contracted bands of muscle, thought to be caused by muscle overload or stress. Stress TrPs have characteristic electromyographic features, and can be visualized with ultrasound and magnetic resonance elastography. Trigger point needling or injection can be effective in inactivating TrP, but correcting triggers is also critical.
October 2016: Seminars in Neurology
Janne Gierthm├╝hlen, Ralf Baron
Diagnosing neuropathic pain and distinguishing it from nociceptive pain can be challenging, but is essential because both forms of pain require different treatment strategies. The diagnosis of neuropathic pain is primarily based on clinical findings. Therefore, a careful, focused history and an examination of the signs characteristic of neuropathic pain are crucial. Imaging techniques and electrophysiological examinations, as well as punch skin biopsy can support the clinical diagnosis. Ideally, treatment should be individualized using a mechanism-based approach...
October 2016: Seminars in Neurology
Benjamin D Elder, Timothy F Witham
Low back pain is highly prevalent, affecting a vast majority of the adult population at some point in their lifetime. Thorough history and physical examination is critically important in evaluating these patients and screening for potentially serious conditions. Imaging should be guided by the history and physical examination, particularly when there is concern for serious conditions and/or a focal neurological deficit present. Adequate treatment of patients with low back pain often requires a multidisciplinary approach, involving several medical specialties...
October 2016: Seminars in Neurology
Jeffrey M Ellenbogen
Sleep medicine can be a particularly rewarding clinical area for neurologists. After all, the driving organ of sleep is the brain. Many of the sleep disorders are primary brain disorders, whereas other sleep disorders (and their medications) influence brain function. But without an organized approach, even the engaged and motivated neurologist can easily become frustrated when dealing with patients whose concerns center on an undesirable degree of sleepiness. Lost in the thicket of information provided during the patient-doctor encounter, many physicians are unable to direct the history toward particular diagnostic hypotheses...
October 2016: Seminars in Neurology
Amy R Tso, Peter J Goadsby
Headache disorders are primarily managed in an outpatient setting; therefore, the authors focus on the primary headache disorders that comprise the bulk of clinical practice. Red flags for secondary headaches that may be more commonly encountered in clinic are briefly discussed.
October 2016: Seminars in Neurology
Daniel R Gold, David S Zee
Dizziness and vertigo are among the most common symptoms to bring a patient to a neurologist. Because symptoms are often vague and imprecise, a systematic approach is essential. By categorizing vestibular disorders based on timing, triggers, and duration, as well as through focused oculomotor and vestibular examinations, the vast majority of neuro-otologic diagnoses can be made at the bedside. Here the authors discuss historical and examination pearls for the most common neuro-otologic disorders.
October 2016: Seminars in Neurology
Shirley H Wray
Acute visual loss is a frightening experience, a common ophthalmic emergency, and a diagnostic challenge. In this review, the author focusses on the diagnosis of transient monocular blindness and visual loss due to infarction of the retina and/or the optic nerve-the ocular parallel of cerebral stroke.
October 2016: Seminars in Neurology
Daniel B Drachman
The basic abnormality in myasthenia gravis (MG) is a reduction in acetylcholine receptors (AChRs) at neuromuscular junctions due to the effects of autoantibodies that are directed against the AChRs in most patients, or against neighboring proteins involved in the clustering of AChRs (MuSK, LRP-4, or agrin). Clinically, MG is characterized by muscle weakness and fatigue, often in typical patterns. The diagnosis may be missed early, and depends on the recognition of clinical manifestations, the measurement of autoantibodies, and/or electrophysiological features...
October 2016: Seminars in Neurology
Brett M Morrison
Neuromuscular diseases are a broadly defined group of disorders that all involve injury or dysfunction of peripheral nerves or muscle. The site of injury can be in the cell bodies (i.e., amyotrophic lateral sclerosis [ALS] or sensory ganglionopathies), axons (i.e., axonal peripheral neuropathies or brachial plexopathies), Schwann cells (i.e., chronic inflammatory demyelinating polyradiculoneuropathy), neuromuscular junction (i.e., myasthenia gravis or Lambert-Eaton myasthenic syndrome), muscle (i.e., inflammatory myopathy or muscular dystrophy), or any combination of these sites...
October 2016: Seminars in Neurology
Justin C McArthur, Nicoline Schiess
No abstract text is available yet for this article.
October 2016: Seminars in Neurology
David M Greer
No abstract text is available yet for this article.
October 2016: Seminars in Neurology
Peter A Ljubenkov, Michael D Geschwind
Dementia often is defined as a progressive cognitive disturbance leading to a loss of independent function. Most clinicians are familiar with the typical pattern of amnestic Alzheimer's disease, the most common neurodegenerative presentation of dementia. Atypical dementia presentations, including atypical Alzheimer's variants, however, may pose a diagnostic challenge for even experienced clinicians. In this article the authors discuss clinical "pearls" for the diagnosis of various neurodegenerative dementia syndromes...
August 2016: Seminars in Neurology
Jenny Linnoila, Sean J Pittock
Autoimmune neurology is a rapidly evolving new subspecialty driven by the discovery of novel neural- (neuronal- or glial-) specific autoantibodies and their target antigens. The neurologic manifestations affecting the central nervous system include encephalitis, dementia, epilepsy, and movement and sleep disorders. Laboratory testing is now available for most of these neural-specific autoantibodies, which serve as diagnostic markers, in some instances directing the physician toward specific cancer types (e...
August 2016: Seminars in Neurology
Leah T Le, Serena S Spudich
Since the advent of combination antiretroviral therapy (cART), HIV has transformed from a fatal disease to a chronic illness that often presents with milder central nervous system (CNS) symptoms laced with related confounders. The immune recovery associated with access to cART has led to a new spectrum of immune-mediated presentations of infection, phenotypically distinct from the conditions observed in advanced disease.HIV-associated neurocognitive disorder (HAND) entails a categorized continuum of disorders reflecting an array of clinical presentation, outcome, and increasing level of severity: asymptomatic neurocognitive impairment (ANI), mild neurocognitive disorder (MND), and HIV-associated dementia (HAD)...
August 2016: Seminars in Neurology
Amanda L Piquet, Jennifer L Lyons
The clinician who is evaluating a patient with a suspected central nervous system infection often faces a large differential diagnosis. There are several signs, symptoms, geographical clues, and diagnostic testing, such as cerebrospinal fluid abnormalities and magnetic resonance imaging abnormalities, which can be helpful in identifying the etiological agent. By taking a systematic approach, one can often identify life-threatening, common, and/or treatable etiologies. Here the authors describe some of the pearls and pitfalls in diagnosing and treating acute infectious meningitis and encephalitis...
August 2016: Seminars in Neurology
Kristin W Bara├▒ano
Leukodystrophies are heritable disorders primarily affecting the white matter of the central nervous system. They are clinically characterized by spasticity, optic atrophy, and ataxia. These are a heterogeneous group of disorders, including hypomyelinating disorders and demyelinating disorders due to abnormal accumulations. Although individually rare, together they are responsible for substantial disease burden. Essentially all these disorders have infantile, juvenile, and adult presentations. Understanding the genetic and biochemical bases of these disorders opens the door to therapeutic approaches...
August 2016: Seminars in Neurology
Jason H Peragallo, Nancy J Newman
Diagnosing the underlying etiology of diplopia requires a structured approach. Double vision can arise from ocular, mechanical, or neurologic causes. A careful history can greatly improve a targeted examination. The approach to initial diagnosis and examination in cases of diplopia has been previously described. Here the authors expand upon those recommendations, and add new techniques recently described in the literature, which may influence the approach to the diplopia patient. A description of the approach to the examination of torsion is discussed...
August 2016: Seminars in Neurology
Nicoline Schiess, Peter A Calabresi
It is estimated that there are 300,000 people with multiple sclerosis (MS) in the United States and 2.3 million worldwide. Each MS attack can affect function in cognitive, emotional, motoric, sensory, or visual domains. Patients are often struck in the prime of their lives as they attempt to move forward with career, and family. Since the previous 2010 Seminars in Neurology Pearls and Pitfalls issue, the world of MS has drastically changed and advanced. Here the authors address the ever-changing MS world in both treatment options and diagnostics, covering easily missed differential diagnoses, newly available immunomodulatory therapy, and the challenges of safely treating patients...
August 2016: Seminars in Neurology
Mackenzie C Cervenka, Peter W Kaplan
The accurate diagnosis and classification of seizures is critical in informing prognosis and determining appropriate antiseizure treatments for patients with epilepsy. The electroencephalogram is the gold standard for diagnosis. Obtaining a thorough history, performing a careful physical examination, and selecting appropriate diagnostic studies are also essential in determining the underlying seizure etiology. The authors provide clinical pearls and pitfalls in the diagnosis and management of epilepsy.
August 2016: Seminars in Neurology
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