At St. Luke’s Center for Neuroscience, you’ll find highly skilled teams of surgeons, physician specialists, nurses, therapists, and other healthcare professionals who are dedicated to expert care of conditions of the nervous system. Many degenerative diseases are chronic and progressive and require the utmost of care, attention and expertise, as they can affect both the body and the mind.
As a result of diverse reasons including disease, stroke, trauma, some medicines and substance abuse, the part of your brain that houses memory can become damaged. Memory disorders can be progressive or immediate, as in the case of a head injury.
Dementia is not a specific disease. It’s an overall term that describes a group of symptoms associated with the loss of cognitive functioning—the ability to think, remember, or reason—to such an extent that it interferes with a person’s daily life and activities. These functions include memory, language skills, visual perception, problem solving, self-management, and the ability to focus and pay attention.
Sixty to 80 percent of all instances of dementia are Alzheimer’s disease, a progressive condition that causes problems with memory, thinking and behavior, gradually worsening over the years. Though associated with those who are older, early onset Alzheimer’s can affect those in their forties and fifties.
A broad term that encompasses diseases of the nervous system, neuropathies affect both movement and sensation.
About 60 to 70 percent of all diabetics eventually display symptoms of diabetic neuropathy. If symptoms appear, they can be in part or all of your body: there can be pain, tingling or numbness in your hands, arms, feet and legs; even your digestive and circulatory system can be affected.
These progressive disorders are caused by the gradual degeneration and loss of neurons in certain areas of the central nervous system, particularly the brain.