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What is Neurology?

Neurology is a branch of medicine focused on the study, diagnosis, and treatment of disorders of the nervous system.

The nervous system has two major divisions:

  • The central nervous system, which includes the brain and spinal cord
  • The peripheral nervous system, which includes the nerves and sensory organs found outside of the central nervous system

A medical doctor that specializes in neurology is called a neurologist. Neurologists treat people who have injuries, diseases, or disorders of the central or peripheral nervous system.

What diseases and conditions do Neurologists treat?

Neurologists treat people with brain or spinal cord injuries, diseases, or conditions, such as:

  • Blood vessel disorders in the brain or spinal cord, such as aneurysms, arteriovenous malformations (AVM), and dural arteriovenous fistulae
  • Brain injury, including anoxic injury or traumatic brain injury
  • Brain tumors, both benign and cancerous
  • Degenerative disorders (disorders that get worse over time) such as Parkinson’s disease, multiple sclerosis, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), Huntington’s chorea, and Alzheimer’s disease
  • Functional disorders, such as headache, seizure disorder, dizziness, balance disorders, and neuralgia
  • Infections, such as meningitis, encephalitis, polio, and brain abscesses
  • Movement disorders, such as dyskinesia and essential tremor
  • Neuromuscular disorders, such as Bell’s palsy, cervical spondylosis, peripheral neuropathy, muscular dystrophy, myasthenia gravis, and Guillain-Barré syndrome
  • Stroke disorders such as ischemic strokes (caused by blood clots), hemorrhagic strokes (caused by bleeding in the brain), and transient ischemic attacks (TIA or “mini-stroke”)

Am I a good candidate for Neurology treatment?

If you have experienced a brain, spinal cord, or peripheral nerve injury, or you have a disease or condition affecting the brain, spine, or peripheral nervous system, you may need to see a neurologist. The status of your injury, disease, or condition will help you, your neurologist, and your other specialists make decisions regarding diagnosis and treatment.

If you are experiencing a medical emergency, please dial 9-1-1.

Information and Resources

American Academy of Neurology