It is a medical specialty branch that diagnoses and treats brain, spinal cord, nerve and muscle diseases and covers 0-18 age group children. Our unit is also included in the literature as “Developmental neurology” or “Pediatric neurology”. Since growth and development continues in the 0-18 age group, neurological examinations, causes, diagnosis and treatment methods of individuals in this group differ from adults and require expertise in this field.
Child neurology, neurological processes of premature and risky babies, developmental disorders in children, brain trauma, loss of consciousness, gait disturbances that occur over the years, familial neurological diseases, headache, paralysis, epilepsy, muscle and nerve injuries, cerebral palsy, autistic complaints. spreads over a wide spectrum, including behavioral disorders.
What Are the Diseases That Child Neurology Is Interested In?
Since the diseases followed by pediatric neurology doctors are related to the brain and nervous system, they can be examined in a wide range. The diagnosis and treatment of many diseases such as abnormalities during pregnancy and birth, brain injuries, cerebral palsy, and strokes are the responsibility of the pediatric neurology department. The main ones of these diseases are:
Cerebral Palsy (Cerebral Palsy)
It is a disease of posture and movement difficulties due to damage to the brain in the mother’s womb, during birth or before the age of 2. Symptoms differ depending on the location and volume of the injured area.
Factors such as premature birth of the baby, blood pressure irregularities of the expectant mother, experiencing blood incompatibility, and the baby’s lack of oxygen during birth can cause this disease. Although the damage is irreversible, early diagnosis and treatment are important for the child to develop his / her skills, as in most diseases.
Hypotonic Baby (Loose Baby)
In this disease, babies’ arm and leg movements are restricted. It is typical for babies to lie down in frog position. The baby’s head drops forward when it is lifted from the armpit and taken to the lap. Slight looseness seen in some babies can improve spontaneously after the age of 2.
It is a neurological disease that occurs suddenly as a result of disorders in the normal functioning of the brain and affects the behavior and consciousness of the person and recurs with seizures. Approximately 65% of children with normal development can be treated with antiepileptic drugs.
Tic, Sydenham chorea, dystonia are among the most common movement disorders. The reason is mostly caused by the damage experienced during brain development. However, it is possible to develop drug side effects, trauma, bleeding, meningitis and genetic characteristics. Together with medication and surgical intervention, it is aimed to increase the quality of life of the patient.
Developmental abnormalities in which children have difficulty speaking, cannot fully establish the relationship between objects, events, people, and exhibit repetitive movements and behaviors cause dysfunctions. Social interaction is limited.
Delay in Neuromotor Development
It is the late completion of development steps of skills such as walking, running, sitting, eating, painting, compared to their peers.
The incidence in children corresponds to about 6%. Neurological and physical examination is performed to understand whether dizziness is caused by central or peripheral causes. It is known that it can be caused by congenital anomalies.
Muscular and Peripheral Nervous System Diseases
Muscle diseases, which are defined as dysfunction as a result of deformities that develop due to weakness or shortness of the muscles, are mostly inherited. The main ones are the SMA types.
First of all, clinical evaluation is made in order to address the ailments of the patient and to make a diagnosis. After the doctor listens to the patient’s history in detail, a physical examination is performed. During the anamnesis; Preliminary information about the disease is accessed by having an idea about subjects such as general condition, age, power, vision, hearing, and speaking ability
Situations assessed by our physicians during pediatric examination:
- General condition, age appropriate reaction and development
- Vision and hearing areas
- Eye movements
- Speaking and mobility
- Head size
- Coordination, balance ability
- Reflex domination.
The first impressions obtained as a result of the clinical evaluation table and the examination reveal the information that leads to the diagnosis of many diseases. In addition, the importance of the tests to be made takes shape after this stage.
What are the Treatment Methods of Child Neurology?
We see most diseases originating from the brain and nervous system in the field of child neurology. As we mentioned in detail, detailed history and physical and neurological examination of the physician are of great importance for diagnosis and treatment. If deemed necessary, the physician applies radiological methods such as EEG, MRI, cranial ultrasonography, and some metabolic and developmental tests to contribute to the diagnosis. When the diagnosis is clarified, all factors and the treatment plan are drawn considering the current condition of the patient.