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Parkinson’s disease and movement disorders

Parkinson’s disease is a degenerative disease of the brain. The cardinal manifestations of Parkinson’s disease are slowness of activities, tremor, stiffness of muscles and postural imbalance. Apart from Parkinson’s disease there are other movement disorders like atypical parkinsonism, Dystonia, Tremor, Chorea, Tics, Myoclonus, Wilson disease, Restless leg syndrome, Gait disorders, Paroxysmal dyskinesias, Drug induced movement disorders, Psychogenic movement disorders, Ataxia, Spasticity, Hemifacial spasm etc

Deep brain stimulation (DBS)

DBS is a surgical technique used in the treatment of patients with advanced Parkinson’s disease (PD) and other movement disorders whose symptoms are not adequately controlled with best medical treatment alone. In many patients with movement disorders DBS can significantly improve the activities of daily living and give a good quality of life. In this treatment, a mild electrical current is used to stimulate an area deep in the brain that controls movement and hence the name ‘deep brain stimulation’. The stimulation changes the activity of the brain cells in a way that helps relieve the symptoms of the disease. Thus, DBS is essentially a pacemaker for the brain. DBS cannot cure diseases but it can improve quality of life.

Botulinum toxin injection

Botulinum toxin injection is a muscle relaxant used to treat a number of movement disorders like dystonia, hemifacial spasm, spasticity etc. It can also be used in chronic migraine and trigeminal neuralgia.


Epilepsy is a neurological disorder produced by abnormal and excessive electrical activity of a group of nerve cells in the brain. Epilepsy is characterized by episodes unawareness or loss of consciousness called seizures. During such episodes patients may also develop up rolling of eyes, frothing from mouth, abnormal movements of the body and incontinence of urine and stool.


Stroke is a neurological disease produced by decreased blood flow to the brain Abrupt onset of a neurologic deficit due to a focal vascular cause. There are two main types of stroke: Ischemic stroke due to lack of blood flow and Hemorrhagic stroke due to bleeding. Ischemic strokes are caused by blockage of a blood vessel. Hemorrhagic strokes are caused by rupture of a blood vessel. The predominant symptoms of stroke are drooping of face, slurring of speech and weakness of one side of the body.


Headache is a very common neurological symptom. Headache may occur as a disease by itself when it is called primary headache. Migraine is an example of primary headache. Headache can also occur as a manifestation of other diseases when it is called secondary headache. Secondary headaches may be due to brain tumor, rupture of an Aneurysm, brain hemorrhage, hydrocephalus, stroke, meningitis, sinusitis, ear Infection, ophthalmologic or dental causes.


Vertigo is a sensation of motion when no motion is occurring relative to earth’s gravity. The sensation can be as if the external world is revolving around the patient (objective vertigo) or he himself is revolving in space (subjective vertigo). Vertigo can be because of a disease of the ear when it is called peripheral vertigo or because of a disease of the brain when it is called central vertigo.


Dementia is a disease of the brain with memory loss as the predominant manifestation. Dementia patients can also have loss of other higher mental functions, changes in personality, mood and behavior. Dementia is usually a disease of the elderly. Most of the dementias are caused by degenerative diseases. Alzheimer’s disease is an example. But dementia can also occur as a complication of other diseases like thyroid disease.

Multiple slerosis and other neuroimmunological disorders

Multiple sclerosis (MS) is a disease of the central nervous system (brain and spinal cord). In MS, the immune system of one’s own body attacks the protective sheath that covers nerve fibres (myelin), This results in loss of myelin sheath called demyelination. MS produces symptoms like visual blurring, double vision, slurring of speech, weakness of limbs, tremor, imbalance, urinary symptoms, difficulty in walking etc. There are other immune related diseases of the brain like Neuromyeliytis Optica (NMO), Autoimmune encephalitis etc.

Sleep disorders

The most common sleep disorder is sleeplessness or insomnia in which the patient has difficulty in either initiating or maintaining sleep. Another common sleep disorder is sleep apnea in which a person develops repeated cessations of breathing during sleep. Most of these patients have snoring when it is called obstructive sleep apnea. There are many other sleep disorders like Restless Legs Syndrome (RLS), Periodic Leg Movements of Sleep (PLMS), REM behavioural disorder (RBD), Excessive Daytime Sleepiness (EDS) and Sleep Attacks

Spine diseases

The most common spine disease is spondylosis or degeneration of the spine. Spondylosis can result in prolapse of intervertebral discs. The prolapsed disc can impinge on a nerve or the spinal cord itself and produce pain, numbness and weakness of limbs. Spine can also have other diseases like tumors, infections etc.

Neuromuscular disorders

These are a group of diseases affecting the peripheral nervous system (outside the central nervous system). These include diseases of the nerve cells like Motor Neuron Diseases (MND) including amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS). Diseases of the peripheral nerves (Peripheral Neuropathy), Neuromuscular junction (Myasthenia Gravis) and muscle diseases (Myopathies) are also examples of neuromuscular diseases.