A neurologist is a medical doctor with specialized training in diagnosing, treating, and managing disorders of the brain and nervous system including, but not limited to, Alzheimer’s disease, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), concussion, epilepsy, migraine, multiple sclerosis, Parkinson’s disease, and stroke.
A child or pediatric, neurologist specializes in the diagnosis and treatment of neurologic disorders in children from the neonatal period through adolescence. Some of the conditions overlap with those seen by adult neurologists, and others are unique to this younger population. Child neurologists treat many of the same common conditions found in adults such as migraine, epilepsy, stroke, and Tourette’s and are also trained in conditions related to neurogenetics and developmental problems.
What does a Neurologist do?
Neurologists are highly trained clinicians capable of diagnosing complex conditions through detailed history and physical examination, including testing of mental status, vision, speech, strength, sensation, coordination, reflexes, and gait. Even as medicine becomes more dependent on technology, the neurological exam will remain a critical component of the patient evaluation.
Some common neurologic tests used to complete the evaluation include:
- Computed tomography (CT) or computer-assisted tomography (CAT) scans
- Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI)
- Electroencephalography (EEG)
- Nerve conduction studies and electromyography (NCS/EMG)
- Lumbar puncture (LP) for cerebral spinal fluid analysis