Explore our Approach

Conditions We Treat

Neurology and Sleep Medicine

Neurology is a branch within medicine that is concerned with the nerves and the nervous system. Neurologists at NeuroCare NY provide comprehensive care for a wide number of neurological disorders, including diseases of the brain, spinal cord, nerves and muscles.

Neurologists at NeuroCare NY utilize imaging, such as magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), carotid ultrasound, computed tomography (CT) scans and electroencephalograph testing (EEG) as well as laboratory blood work to determine the underlying cause of a neurological disorder.

Within our practice, neurologists may also administer infusions, epidural injections and perform physical therapy dependent on a patient’s condition. At NeuroCare NY neurologists deal with common neurological disorders from strokes, seizures or epilepsy, headaches, multiple sclerosis, to much more progressive disorders such as, dementias (Alzheimer’s disease) or Parkinson’s disease. Patients can benefit from a highly qualified team of neurologists at NeuroCare NY who possess extensive training and clinical experiences of all matter in the field of neurology.

Neurology Specialist

At NeuroCare NY, our goal is to provide a treatment plan that is entirely geared toward you. Our medical staff will spend time with you to understand your condition and recommend a treatment program that can help reduce or eliminate the source of the problem. Make an appointment today by calling the practice or using the online scheduling tool.

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Click on the links below to learn more about some of the neurology treatments we specialize in:

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Sleep Disorders Specialist

Patients with sleep disorders tend to fall into one of four groups.

  • Disorders of Initiating and Maintaining Sleep (Insomnia)
  • Disorders of Excessive Sleepiness (e.g., narcolepsy, sleep apnea)
  • Sleep Related Behaviors (e.g., sleepwalking, night terrors)
  • Circadian Rhythm Disorders (e.g., shift work)

During your in-lab or home study, we collect important diagnostic data your referring physician will use to determine if you have a sleep disorder and to manage your treatment. Call or schedule an appointment online today to find out more.

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Insomnia

Insomnia should be viewed as a symptom generally, rather than a disease. Evaluation of insomnia requires a careful sleep history and physical examination. Insomnia can occur as a result of many things, including but not limited to the following:

  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Painful Medical Conditions
  • Shift Changes
  • Medication
  • Restless Leg Syndrome

Treatment of insomnia may require changes in sleep behavior, treatment of underlying medical conditions, and at times, medication. Sleep testing (Polysomnography) is only occasionally required to diagnose the cause of insomnia.

Narcolepsy

Narcolepsy is a genetically inherited illness characterized by excessive daytime sleepiness. It may be accompanied by complaints of sudden episodes of weakness, often triggered by emotion (laughter, anger, etc.) called Cataplexy. Narcolepsy can also be accompanied by waking up paralyzed for seconds (sleep paralysis), and vivid dream-like hallucinations upon falling asleep (hypnogogic hallucinations).

Narcolepsy can also be diagnosed by overnight sleep testing (Polysomnogram), followed by a daytime test called a Multiple Sleep Latency Test. The Multiple Sleep Latency Test is a series of daytime naps occurring every two hours to measure how quickly one falls asleep during the day. Narcolepsy is a treatable condition, which may include medication, and adjustments to sleep behavior.

Sleep Apnea

Sleep Apnea is one of the most common disorders seen by physicians. It is a disorder of breathing that occurs during sleep. Obstructive sleep apnea is typically characterized by snoring, and a complaint of fatigue or excessive daytime sleepiness. A bed partner may report repeated pauses in breathing during sleep, and patients may complain of gasping or choking episodes during sleep. It is more common in overweight men, but can be seen in a variety of individuals.

Sleep Apnea is diagnosed by the use of a sleep test, known as a Polysomnogram. During a Polysomnogram, a patient will have small wires attached to their body while they sleep to determine if they have this disorder. If present, treatment options can include the use of nasal CPAP (Continuous Positive Airway Pressure), upper airway surgery, dental devices, weight loss, or positional treatments.

Restless Leg Syndrome

Restless Leg Syndrome is characterized by:

  • An uncomfortable sensation in the limbs (legs, and occasionally arms) associated with an irresistible urge to move the limbs
  • Typically occurs in the evening or night time
  • Occurs during periods of rest or inactivity
  • Is partially or totally relieved temporarily by moving or stretching the affected limb(s)

Restless Leg Syndrome may be inherited in some individuals. It may occur during pregnancy or, in patients with anemia or iron deficiency. It may be due to side effects of certain medications, or occur with certain Neurologic disorders as well. Restless Leg Syndrome is often aggravated by the effects of caffeine, nicotine, or alcohol, but can be treated with medication in many patients.

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Migraine Specialist

A headache or cephalgia is pain of the head or neck. Headaches can result from a wide range of causes both benign and more serious. Brain tissue itself is not sensitive to pain as it lacks pain receptors. Rather, the pain is caused by disturbance of the pain-sensitive structures around the brain. Nine areas of the head and neck have these pain-sensitive structures, which are the cranium, muscles, nerves, arteries and veins, subcutaneous tissues, eyes, ears, sinuses and mucous membranes.

There are a number of different classification systems for headaches. The most well-recognized is that of the International Headache Society. Headache is a non-specific symptom, which means that it has many possible causes, including fatigue and sleep deprivation, stress, the effects of medications and recreational drugs, viral infections and common colds, head injury, rapid ingestion of a very cold food or beverage, dental or sinus issues, and many more.

A migraine headache can cause intense throbbing or a pulsing sensation in one area of the head and is commonly accompanied by nausea, vomiting, and extreme sensitivity to light and sound.

Migraine attacks can cause significant pain for hours to days and be so severe that all you can think about is finding a dark, quiet place to lie down. Some migraines are preceded or accompanied by sensory warning symptoms (aura), such as flashes of light, blind spots, or tingling in your arm or leg. Medications can help reduce the frequency and severity of migraines.

If treatment hasn’t worked for you in the past, talk to your doctor about trying a different migraine headache medication. The right medicines, combined with self-help remedies and lifestyle changes, may make a big difference.

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Headache Specialist

Everyone gets a headache now and then, but if you have headaches more than a couple of times a month or if the pain is so severe that it prevents you from participating in your normal activities, you may need help from a neurologist like Dr. Inan MD at NeuroCare NY in the Financial District of Manhattan and Forest Hills, New York. Dr. Inan provides diagnosis and treatment for a variety of headache conditions. You don’t need to put up with chronic headaches — call or schedule a consultation online today.

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Headache Q & A

What causes headaches?

Headaches are typically divided into two main categories:

  • Primary headaches: occur without other symptoms or illnesses; include migraines, cluster headaches, and tension headaches
  • Secondary headaches: are symptoms of another condition like a cold or high blood pressure

Common causes of headaches include:

  • Dehydration
  • Muscle tension
  • Nerve compression
  • Hormone fluctuations
  • Temporomandibular joint disorder (TMJ)

While headaches are common, when they’re severe or frequent they can disrupt your life. You don’t need to accept headaches as normal when the doctor offers effective, customized care.

What are migraines?

Migraines are severe primary headaches that often cause symptoms that include nausea, distorted vision, and sensitivity to light, sound, and scent. The precise cause of migraines isn’t currently understood, although hormones and stress are believed to contribute.

Genetics may also play a role. Your risk of getting migraines is higher if a member of your family also has them.

What are cluster headaches?

A cluster headache occurs when you have several severe headaches over a period of consecutive days, weeks, or even months.

Many people who experience cluster headaches get them in cyclic flare-ups or outbreaks. Cluster headaches are believed to be linked to hormonal fluctuations and your internal “clock,” controlled by your hypothalamus gland.

How are headaches diagnosed?

Before they can determine the best treatment for your headaches, the doctor needs to understand their type and cause. S/he offers detailed consultations where you discuss your symptoms and personal and family medical history. The doctor may ask you to keep a journal or log of your symptoms and other lifestyle factors like your diet, water consumption, and physical activity.

The doctor also performs a physical exam and may request additional testing, including blood work and imaging tests like X-rays, MRIs, and CT scans, to rule out other conditions that could be causing your headaches.

How are headaches treated?

The doctors create a customized treatment strategy to relieve your pain and address any underlying conditions. S/he may suggest modifications to your diet to avoid certain trigger foods, or s/he may recommend that you reduce your caffeine or alcohol consumption.

S/he may prescribe medications to both prevent and treat migraines, and s/he may suggest Botox® injections if you have chronic tension headaches.

If severe or chronic headaches are disrupting your life, call or book an appointment online. The doctor can identify the cause of your pain and provide effective treatments to help you get your life back.

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Back Pain Specialist

Medical research estimates that nearly 80% of American adults will experience back pain at some point during their lives. At NeuroCare NY in the Financial District of Manhattan and Forest Hills, New York, the physicians provide expert diagnosis and treatment for back pain. They combine a compassionate bedside manner with an informative approach to help you find pain relief while your back heals. Call or schedule an appointment online today for customized back pain treatment.

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Back Pain Q & A

What causes back pain?

Back pain is a prevalent condition, and you can experience chronic or acute pain anywhere along your spine or in the muscles or soft tissues of your back. You might have a sharp, shooting pain or a dull ache.

A variety of injuries or conditions could contribute to your back pain, such as:

  • An injury to the muscles or connective tissue
  • Degenerative disc disease
  • Herniated discs
  • Facet joint problems
  • Sacroiliac joint problems
  • Arthritis
  • Skeletal irregularities like scoliosis or stenosis
  • Osteoporosis

Your lifestyle can exacerbate back pain. For example, if you lead a sedentary lifestyle, are overweight, or if you smoke, your back pain may be worse or more difficult to treat.

If you’ve had back pain for more than three days without a reduction in your symptoms, if a tingling sensation in your legs accompanies your pain, or if you don’t find relief from over-the-counter pain medication, you should make an appointment with Dr. Inan at NeuroCare NY for diagnosis and treatment.

How is back pain diagnosed?

The doctor diagnoses the cause of your back pain with a comprehensive physical exam and a variety of diagnostic imaging tests. Your diagnosis begins with a conversation about your symptoms, lifestyle, and medical history.

During the physical portion of your exam, the provider feels your spine and muscles, checking for inflammation and other abnormalities. He also guides you through a series of movements to gauge your range of motion and the severity of your pain. In some cases, the doctor may order imaging tests, like X-rays or an MRI, to examine your bones and soft tissues.

How is back pain treated?

After diagnosing the cause of your pain, the physicians create a customized treatment plan to relieve your symptoms and address any underlying conditions. In most cases, your program includes a combination of medication, hot and cold therapy, and physical therapy to strengthen your back and core, improve your flexibility, and restore your range of motion.

Depending on the root cause of your pain, the physicians may suggest facet joint injections, epidural injections, or sacroiliac joint blocks.

If back pain is disrupting your life, make an appointment with the physicians by calling NeuroCare NY or using the online booking tool.

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Neck Pain Specialist

If you’re living with neck pain, especially if it’s disrupting your mobility or preventing you from participating in your regular activities, contact the providers at NeuroCare NY. With offices in the Financial District of Manhattan and Forest Hills, New York, the doctors offer expert diagnosis and treatment for chronic and acute neck pain. Make an appointment today by calling the practice or using the online scheduling tool.

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Neck Pain Q & A

What causes back pain?

Neck pain is often due to a muscle or soft tissue strain or a compressed nerve. In many cases, poor posture puts excess stress on the vertebrae and soft tissues in your neck, leading to pain and a limited range of motion.

For example, if your workstation isn’t set up ergonomically, you may spend eight hours a day or more holding your neck in an awkward position to see your screen. It’s also estimated that the average American adult spends five hours using a mobile device every day. That means five hours a day with your head tilted down, pulling on the muscles and bones of your neck.

Other conditions that can cause neck pain include:

  • Degenerative disc disease
  • Herniated discs
  • Stenosis
  • Arthritis
  • Fractures

Many of these conditions cause pain by creating inflammation in the muscles and connective tissue of your neck as well as by compressing nerves. Numbness and tingling in your arms or hands may indicate nerve compression.

How is neck pain diagnosed?

In addition to providing a comprehensive physical exam, the doctors use a variety of imaging tests to diagnose the cause of your neck pain.

During your exam, s/he feels your neck and guides you through a series of movements to gauge the limitations on your range of motion and the severity of your pain. Diagnostic tests like X-rays and MRIs allow the doctor to see your bones and soft tissues to check for signs of injury, inflammation, and abnormalities that could be contributing to your pain.

How is neck pain treated?

The doctors offer a variety of individualized treatments designed to relieve your pain and address any underlying conditions. Your treatment plan is customized to meet your specific needs, but it typically includes a combination of anti-inflammatory drugs, hot and cold therapies, and physical therapy.

At NeuroCare NY, the doctors also offer trigger point injections or epidural injections to reduce inflammation in your cervical spine that’s compressing a nerve and causing pain.

If you’re living with neck pain, call or make an appointment online today to meet with the doctors for compassionate care and expert treatment.

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Dizziness & Vertigo Specialist

If you frequently feel dizzy or faint, you may have low blood pressure, vertigo, or a neurological condition, and you’re at an increased risk of fall-related injuries. At NeuroCare NY, in the Financial District of Manhattan and Forest Hills, New York, Dr Inan offers expert diagnosis and customized medical treatment to address dizziness and any underlying conditions. If you’re experiencing frequent dizziness, call or schedule a consultation online today.

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Dizziness Q & A

What causes dizziness?

When you feel lightheaded or dizzy, you may lose your balance, fall over, or even faint. Most of the time, dizziness is caused by a middle ear infection or low blood pressure. In rarer cases, you may have a condition such as:

  • Benign paroxysmal positional vertigo
  • Infection of your vestibular nerve
  • A vestibular migraine
  • Disruption of sensory nerves
  • Parkinson’s disease
  • Multiple sclerosis

Your risk of dizziness increases as you get older or if you’ve had previous episodes of dizziness. If you suffer from frequent dizzy spells, make an appointment with the doctor to get to the bottom of your symptoms and receive the necessary treatment to reduce or stop your dizziness.

How is vertigo different from dizziness?

Vertigo is a specific kind of dizziness where you feel like your surroundings are spinning or lurching around you. You can experience vertigo at any time, whether you’re standing, sitting, or lying down. Vertigo is often due to problems in your middle ear.

How is dizziness diagnosed?

The doctor evaluates your dizziness with a physical exam and a variety of tests to identify the cause of your symptoms and rule out other conditions that could cause dizziness. During your consultation, s/he’ll ask detailed questions about your symptoms and your medical history. S/he’ll check your blood pressure and examine your ears, sinuses, and throat.

The doctor may also order blood work, auditory testing, and diagnostic imaging tests to gather more information that will help to identify the condition responsible for your dizziness.

How is dizziness treated?

The doctor customizes your treatment plan to address both your symptoms and the condition causing them. For example, if your dizziness is due to an issue like an ear infection, low blood sugar, or low blood pressure, s/he can prescribe medication and lifestyle modifications.

If you have a neurological condition like multiple sclerosis or Parkinson’s disease, the providers offer customized treatments to control your symptoms and slow the progression of your illness.

When necessary, they can also refer you to other specialists, like an ear, nose, and throat doctor, for the precise medical care required to resolve your dizziness.

If you’re concerned about dizziness, call or schedule an appointment online today to get the expert care you need to improve your health and reduce your risk of falls and injuries.

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Memory Loss Specialist

Memory loss is distressing, even when you simply can’t seem to remember the right word or what you had for breakfast yesterday. However, when you consistently have trouble with your memory, it may be a sign of a more serious problem. At NeuroCare NY, the doctors offer memory evaluations and treatment for memory issues at two office locations, in the Financial District of Manhattan and Forest Hills, New York. If you’re concerned about your memory, call or schedule an appointment online today.

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Memory Loss Q & A

What causes memory loss?

If you’re experiencing memory loss, it could stem from a variety of conditions, including dementia, transient ischemic attacks (TIAs), or chemical or structural irregularities in your brain.

Conditions like Parkinson’s disease and Huntington’s disease can also cause memory problems, as can certain vitamin deficiencies.

Typical signs of memory loss include:

  • Inability to find the right words to describe a feeling, concept, or object
  • Repeating the same questions
  • Getting lost easily
  • Behavioral and mood changes
  • Taking longer than usual to perform everyday tasks

Memory loss isn’t always caused by a serious medical condition. You might temporarily forget things because of drug or alcohol use or a head injury.

If you or someone you love is having memory problems, it’s important to get a medical assessment right away. While many of the conditions that cause memory loss aren’t curable, treatment is available to slow the progression of many diseases and enhance your quality of life.

How is memory loss evaluated?

The doctor provides comprehensive consultations to evaluate memory loss and diagnose any underlying conditions that may be contributing to the issue. S/he talks to you in detail about your personal and family medical history and performs a full physical exam, including cognitive function tests like remembering words, writing sentences, and reproducing simple line drawings.

In addition to your consultation, the doctor may order diagnostic imaging tests, such as an MRI or CT scan, to look for abnormalities in your brain. They also use Doppler ultrasound imaging to study the blood vessels in your brain.

How is memory loss treated?

The doctor provides customized treatments for memory loss and the associated conditions that cause cognitive impairment. His or her approach to memory loss care is patient-focused, and s/he may involve your family for additional support. S/he strives to improve your quality of life, helping you lead a healthy, active, and independent life for as long as possible.

Medications and therapies may be able to reduce your symptoms and slow the progression of conditions like dementia and Parkinson’s disease. The doctors also suggest lifestyle modifications, such as adding regular physical activity to your routine, eating a balanced diet, and making sure you get sufficient sleep.

For expert memory loss evaluation and customized, patient-focused treatments, call or book an appointment online today.

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Numbness & Tingling Specialist

Most people are familiar with that uncomfortable feeling when your foot “falls asleep” from a lack of blood flow, but neurological conditions like multiple sclerosis can also cause this kind of numbness and tingling. At NeuroCare NYin the Financial District of Manhattan and Forest Hills, New York, the doctors offer diagnosis and treatments for numbness and tingling. To learn more, call or schedule a consultation online today.

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Numbness and Tingling Q & A

What is numbness?

Numbness occurs when you lose sensation, either partially or entirely, in a part of your body. You may not be able to feel pain, temperature, or even touch. You may also experience a tingling or “pins-and-needles” sensation or have trouble with your coordination or balance, which could lead to problems walking or driving.

What causes tingling and numbness?

Tingling and numbness are often symptoms of a nervous system dysfunction, such as a compressed nerve in your spine or a neurological disorder.

Physical conditions that can cause numbness to include:

  • Herniated discs
  • Degenerative disc disease
  • Spinal cord injuries or tumors
  • Peripheral nerve compression
  • Carpal tunnel syndrome

Neurological conditions that cause numbness include:

  • Multiple sclerosis
  • Guillain-Barré syndrome
  • Parkinson’s disease
  • Charcot-Marie-Tooth disease
  • Raynaud’s disease
  • Sjogren’s syndrome
  • Brachial plexus injury
  • Paraneoplastic syndromes of the nervous system

All these conditions and injuries disrupt the neural pathways between your body and brain. Disruptions can occur anywhere in your nervous system and are often due to inflammation that compresses a nerve. Over an extended period of time, compression can lead to permanent nerve damage.

How is numbness diagnosed?

The doctor offers extensive physical exams and diagnostic testing to identify the cause of your numbness and tingling sensations. During your consultation, s/he discusses your symptoms and reviews your medical history. Details like how quickly the numbness started, when it began, and its location in your body can help the doctor determine the underlying condition.

S/he also performs a thorough physical exam, where s/he checks your reflexes as well as the sensation in your feet, legs, hands, and arms. In some cases, he may order blood work and diagnostic imaging tests, such as an MRI or CT scan, to look for other clues or rule out certain conditions.

How are tingling and numbness treated?

Your customized treatment plan depends on the condition responsible for your symptoms. The doctor focuses your treatment on relieving your symptoms and reducing your risk of falling and injuring yourself. If you have a neurological condition, he also focuses on managing the underlying disease.

If you frequently experience numbness and tingling in your feet, legs, or anywhere else in your body, call or schedule an appointment online today for expert diagnosis and care.

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Alzheimer’s Disease Specialist

Alzheimer’s disease (AD) accounts for 60% of cases of dementia. It is a chronic neurodegenerative disease that usually starts slowly and gets worse over time. The most common early symptom is difficulty in short-term memory loss. As the disease advances, symptoms can include: language issues, disorientationmood swings, loss of motivation, not managing ADL’s, and behavior issues. As a person’s condition declines, they often withdraw from family and society. Gradually, bodily functions are lost, ultimately leading to death. Although the speed of progression can vary, the average life expectancy following diagnosis is three to nine years. To learn more call or schedule a consultation online today.

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The cause of Alzheimer’s disease is poorly understood. About 70% of the risk is believed to be genetic with many genes usually involved. Other risk factors include: a history of head injuries, depression or hypertension. The disease process is associated with plaques and tangles in the brain. A probable diagnosis is based on the history of the illness and cognitive testing with medical imaging and blood tests to rule out other possible causes. Initial symptoms are often mistaken for normal aging. Examination of brain tissue is needed for a definite diagnosis. Mental and physical exercise, and avoiding obesity may decrease the risk of AD. There are no medications or supplements with evidence to support their use.

No treatments stop or reverse its progression, though some may temporarily improve symptoms. Affected people increasingly rely on others for assistance, often placing a burden on the caregiver; the pressures can include social, psychological, physical, and economic elements. Exercise programs are beneficial with respect to activities of daily living and potentially improve outcomes. Treatment of behavioral problems or psychosis due to dementia with antipsychotics is common but not usually recommended due to there often being little benefit and an increased risk of early death.

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Seizures & Fainting Specialist

Seizures are generally described in two major groups of seizures, primary generalizedseizures and partialseizures. The difference between these types is in how and where they begin. The type of treatment prescribed will depend on several factors, including the frequency and severity of the seizures and the person’s age, overall health, and medical history. If you’re concerned, call or schedule an appointment online today.

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A new way of naming seizures has been developed by epilepsy specialists, but most often these common names are still used.

Primary generalized seizuresbegin with a widespread electrical discharge that involves both sides of the brain at once. Hereditary factors are important in many of these seizures.

Partial seizuresbegin with an electrical discharge in one limited area of the brain. Many different things can cause partial seizures, for example head injury, brain infection, stroke, tumor, or changes in the way an area of the brain was formed before birth called cortical dysplasias. Many times, no known cause is found, but genetic factors may be important in some partial seizures.

Partial seizures can be broken down further, depending on whether a person’s awareness or consciousness (the ability to respond and remember) is affected.

There are six types of generalized seizures.

  • The most common is the generalized convulsion, also called the grand-malseizure or a tonic-clonicseizure. The patient loses consciousness and usually collapses. The loss of consciousness is followed by generalized body stiffening ,tonic, for 30 to 60 seconds, then by violent jerking, clonic for 30 to 60 seconds, after which the patient goes into the postictal phase. During tonic-clonic seizures, injuries and accidents may occur, such as tongue biting and urinary incontinence.
  • Absence seizurescause a short loss of consciousness lasting only a few seconds with few or no symptoms. The patient, most often a child, typically interrupts an activity and stares blankly. These seizures begin and end abruptly and may occur several times a day. Patients are usually not aware that they are having a seizure, except that they may be aware of “losing time.”
  • Myoclonic seizuresconsist of sporadic jerks, usually on both sides of the body. Patients sometimes describe the jerks as brief electrical shocks. When violent, these seizures may result in dropping or involuntarily throwing objects.
  • Clonic seizuresare repetitive, rhythmic jerks that involve both sides of the body at the same time.
  • Tonic seizuresare characterized by stiffening of the muscles.
  • Atonic seizuresconsist of a sudden and general loss of muscle tone, particularly in the arms and legs, which often results in a fall.
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Parkinson’s Disease Specialist

Parkinson’s disease (PD) is a type of movement disorder. It happens when nerve cells in the brain don’t produce enough of a brain chemical called dopamine. Sometimes it is genetic, but most cases do not seem to run in families. Exposure to chemicals in the environment might play a role. To learn more, call or schedule a consultation online today.

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Symptoms begin gradually, often on one side of the body. Later they affect both sides. They include

  • Trembling of hands, arms, legs, jaw and face
  • Stiffness of the arms, legs and trunk
  • Slowness of movement
  • Poor balance and coordination

As symptoms get worse, people with the disease may have trouble walking, talking, or doing simple tasks. They may also have problems such as depression, sleep problems, or trouble chewing, swallowing, or speaking.

There is no lab test for PD, so it can be difficult to diagnose. Doctors use a medical history and a neurological examination to diagnose it.

PD usually begins around age 60, but it can start earlier. It is more common in men than in women. There is no cure for PD. A variety of medicines sometimes help symptoms dramatically. Surgery and deep brain stimulation (DBS) can help severe cases. With DBS, electrodes are surgically implanted in the brain. They send electrical pulses to stimulate the parts of the brain that control movement.

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Multiple Sclerosis Specialist

Multiple Sclerosis (MS) is a chronic, often disabling disease that attacks the central nervous system (CNS), which is made up of the brain, spinal cord, and optic nerves. Symptoms may be mild, such as numbness in the limbs, or severe, such as paralysis or loss of vision. The progress, severity, and specific symptoms of MS are unpredictable and vary from one person to another. Today, new treatments and advances in research are giving new hope to people affected by the disease. If you’re concerned, call or schedule an appointment online today.

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Symptoms can include, among others:

  • Paralysis
  • Numbness
  • Balance Impairment
  • Visual Loss
  • Dizziness

The disease is likely the result of a genetic predisposition, and some environmental trigger that causes one’s own immune system to attack the brain, spinal cord, and optic nerves. The diagnosis and treatment of Multiple Sclerosis can be difficult and is best handled by an experienced Neurologist.

Multiple Sclerosis is Thought to be an Autoimmune Disease

The body’s own defense system attacks myelin, the fatty substance that surrounds and protects the nerve fibers in the central nervous system. The nerve fibers themselves can also be damaged. The damaged myelin forms scar tissue (sclerosis), which gives the disease its name. When any part of the myelin sheath or nerve fiber is damaged or destroyed, nerve impulses traveling to and from the brain and spinal cord are distorted or interrupted, producing the variety of symptoms that can occur.

Most people with MS learn to cope with the disease and continue to lead satisfying, productive lives.

Four Courses of Multiple Sclerosis

People with Multiple Sclerosis can typically experience one of four disease courses, each of which might be mild, moderate, or severe.

  • Relapsing-Remitting Multiple Sclerosis
    People with this type of MS experience clearly defined attacks of worsening neurologic function. These attacks—which are called relapses, flare-ups, or exacerbations —are followed by partial or complete recovery periods (remissions), during which no disease progression occurs. Approximately 85% of people are initially diagnosed with relapsing-remitting MS.
  • Primary-Progressive Multiple Sclerosis
    This disease course is characterized by slowly worsening neurologic function from the beginning—with no distinct relapses or remissions. The rate of progression may vary over time, with occasional plateaus and temporary minor improvements. Approximately 10% of people are diagnosed with primary-progressive MS.
  • Secondary-Progressive Multiple Sclerosis
    Following an initial period of relapsing-remitting MS, many people develop a secondary-progressive disease course in which the disease worsens more steadily, with or without occasional flare-ups, minor recoveries (remissions), or plateaus. Before the disease-modifying medications became available, approximately 50% of people with relapsing-remitting MS developed this form of the disease within 10 years. Long-term data are not yet available to determine if treatment significantly delays this transition.
  • Progressive-Relapsing Multiple Sclerosis
    In this relatively rare course of MS (5%), people experience steadily worsening disease from the beginning, but with clear attacks of worsening neurologic function along the way. They may or may not experience some recovery following these relapses, but the disease continues to progress without remissions.

Since no two people have exactly the same experience of MS, the disease course may look very different from one person to another. And, it may not always be clear to the physician—at least right away—which course a person is experiencing.

For more important information about Multiple Sclerosis, check out Just the Facts.

Some Important Facts

  • MS is a chronic, unpredictable neurological disease that affects the central nervous system.
  • Different people are likely to experience very different symptoms.
  • MS is different from muscular dystrophy (MD), which is a group of disorders that cause progressive and irreversible wasting away of muscle tissue. Although MD has some symptoms in common with MS—such as weakness and problems with walking—MD affects the muscles directly while MS affects the central nervous system.
  • MS is not contagious and is not directly inherited.
  • Most people with MS have a normal or near-normal life expectancy.
  • The majority of people with MS do not become severely disabled.
  • There are now FDA-approved medications that have been shown to reduce the number of relapses and “modify” or slow down the underlying course of MS.
  • People who are diagnosed with a Clinically Isolated Syndrome (CIS) have had one episode of neurologic damage that is similar to the damage that occurs in MS, but they have not yet met the criteria for a definite diagnosis of MS.

Is There Currently A Cure?

There is no known cure for Multiple Sclerosis, however, there are treatments that are effective in reducing the likelihood of worsening of the disease, and, there are a multitude of new treatments in current research and development that will soon be available.

For more information on Multiple Sclerosis, or to speak with one of our physicians regarding treatment options, please contact us to schedule an appointment.

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Neuropathy & Muscle Cramp Specialist

Neuropathy is a general term that refers to diseases or malfunctions of the nerves. Any nerves at any location in the body can be damaged from injury or disease. Neuropathy is often classified according to the types or location of nerves that are affected. Neuropathy can also be classified according to the disease causing it. If you’re concerned, call or schedule an appointment online today.

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There are several types of Neuropathy:

Peripheral neuropathy

Peripheral neuropathy is when the nerve problem affects the nerves outside of the brain and spinal cord. These nerves are part of the peripheral nervous system. Accordingly, peripheral neuropathy is neuropathy that affects the nerves of the extremities- the toes, feet, legs, fingers, hands, and arms. The term proximalneuropathy has been used to refer to nerve damage that specifically causes pain in the thighs, hips, or buttocks.

Cranial neuropathy

Cranial neuropathy occurs when any of the twelve cranial nerves are damaged. Two specific types of cranial neuropathy are optic neuropathy and auditory neuropathy. Optic neuropathyrefers to damage or disease of the optic nerve that transmits visual signals from the retina of the eye to the brain. Auditory neuropathyinvolves the nerve that carries signals from the inner ear to the brain and is responsible for hearing.

Autonomic neuropathy

Autonomic neuropathy is damage to the nerves of the involuntary nervous system, the nerves that control the heart and circulation including blood pressure, digestion, bowel and bladder function, the sexual response, and perspiration. Nerves in other organs may also be affected.

Focal neuropathy

Focal neuropathy is neuropathy that is restricted to one nerve or group of nerves, or one area of the body. Symptoms of focal neuropathy usually appear suddenly.

Our specialists can order and perform diagnostic testing for evaluation and treatment of your condition including but not limited to Electromyogram (EMG) and Nerve Conduction Studies.

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