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What is a Neurologist?

Neurologist

If you or any of your friends or family have unexplained symptoms related to the brain or nervous system, your doctor may recommend an exam with a neurologist.

Let’s understand how a neurologist can assist you and help you with your nerve-related problems.

What is a Neurologist Doctor?

A neurologist is a doctor who specializes in diagnosing, treating, and managing brains and nervous system disorders such as Alzheimer’s disease, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, motor neuron disease (MND), Bell’s palsy, concussion, epilepsy, migraine, multiple sclerosis, Parkinson’s disease, Neurofibromatosis, and stroke. These neurological disorders require assistance from a neuro specialist. They do not perform surgery but can refer you to a neurosurgeon or a spine surgeon.

Why would I be referred to a Neurologist?

There are various reasons that your primary care doctor may refer you to see a neurologist. The reasons may include getting headaches that won’t go away. Another possibility is after a car accident, a part of your body is experiencing tingling and numbness.

Your primary care doctor is aware of your medical history and can perform lab tests and diagnostics to identify the cause of your pain and discomfort. However, they may also recommend you going through a neurological exam to eliminate possibilities. If you experience any of the below symptoms in severity, you may be referred to a neurologist –

How to Become a Neurologist?

Neurology is an exhaustive field and hence, requires an extensive amount of information to be a specialist. It involves 4 years of medical college, a 1-year internship, and 3 years of special neurological training.

It is a process with the following steps:

  • Pursue an undergraduate degree

  • Undergo entrance exams for medical colleges and get admission.

  • Attain medical college and obtain a degree.

  • Do an internship and neurological special training.

  • Get the board certificate and state license, and begin your practice.

Neurological Tests and Procedures

A neurologist creates a treatment plan to identify the cause of symptoms of both common and complex neurological conditions.

Depending on your symptoms, the following diagnostic tests may be performed:

  • Blood and urine tests to identify infections, toxins, or protein disorders.

  • Brain or spine test to identify tumors, brain damage, or problems related to blood vessels, bones, nerves, or disks.

  • Electroencephalograph or EEG to study brain function. This is done in case of seizures. It uses a machine that records electrical activity in your brain.

  • Electromyogram or EMG to test the communication between nerve and the muscle.

  • Evoked potentials to measure the response of your brain to hearing, vision, and other nerves.

  • Spinal tap or lumbar puncture, a diagnosis of blood or infection with a small amount of fluid taken from your spine.

  • A muscle or nerve biopsy to identify the signs of neuromuscular disorders.

  • Tensilon test to diagnose myasthenia gravis.

With these diagnoses, they check for:

  • Mental status

  • Speech

  • Vision

  • Strength

  • Coordination

  • Reflexes

  • And sensation

A Neurologist Visit Preparation

It is crucial to visit a neurologist for consultation with preparation. Keep the following things in mind before paying a visit –

  • Note down all your symptoms and other health information such as medical history, current medications, allergies, previous illnesses, accidents, and your family’s history of the disease. Tell the doctor everything you think they need to know.

  • List down your questions to ask.

  • Send the previous test results to neurologists or take them with you.

  • Take a friend or family member with you so that you do not miss anything.

The Fort Lauderdale neurologist is going to share a lot of information with you, so make sure you take notes of it. Do not hesitate to ask questions in case of any confusion. Make sure you understand everything from diagnosis to treatment. The more focused and interactive you will be, the better your treatment will result.

Schedule your visit to the neurologist as soon as possible to avoid future compilation and easy treatment.