Common Diseases of the Nervous System
Cerebral palsy is one of the common cripplers of children. It is caused by damage to the brain of a newborn baby during birth. Lack of oxygen or injury usually causes the brain damage. The damage affects the child’s ability to use and control muscles. The typical victim of cerebral palsy may have trouble walking, speaking, and using his/her hands.
People afflicted with this disease have normal intelligence. They can be trained in clinics and special classes.
The common viral disease that attacks the nervous system is poliomyelitis or infantile paralysis. This is a disease affecting the gray matter of the spinal cord. It starts with fever, headaches, sore throat, and stomach upset. This may result in paralysis, which is most common in the lower limbs.
Tumors sometimes develop in the brain. The majority of the brain tumors can be operated on if they are diagnosed early enough and they have no serious after-effects. However, if the growth results in the destruction of some nerve tissues, the damage may not be repaired.
This is the clotting of blood in a blood vessel of the brain which may cause stroke or a sudden loss of consciousness, followed by paralysis. This kind of disease is common after middle age.
Amnesia is a state of mind wherein months or years of memories suddenly vanish. There are two types of amnesia: organic and functional. Organic amnesia is caused by damage to the brain brought about by head injuries, severe illness, senility (old age), concussions or violent blows, alcoholism, and stroke. Functional amnesia is caused by trauma (shocking event or horrifying scene) or stress. Generally, organic amnesia lasts longer than functional amnesia.
The return of memory, assisted by complete rest by a patient and by attempts to establish associations with the past in the patient’s mind, can help in the return of memory.